left corner left corner
China Daily Website  

Illegal immigrants are not refugees

Updated: 2015-07-13 07:42
(China Daily)

Illegal immigrants are not refugees

A screen grab from state broadcaster CCTV shows that illegal immigrants were repatriated from Thailand to China on Thursday.

Do the media or politicians in the United States call people refugees when they are smuggled from one country to another in an organized way for different purposes? Of course, not, they call them illegal immigrants. And they are indeed illegal immigrants.

Yet, when they are Uygurs from China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, then they are called "refugees". A politicized transformation intended to smear mud on the face of China.

Washington's groundless accusations against Thailand for its recent repatriation of more than 100 illegal immigrants back to China once again shows that it looks at things through distorting spectacles when they are related to China.

The Thai government knows what it is doing. Its joint investigations with China identified these Uygurs as illegal immigrants. As such, it is in complete accord\ance with related international laws and conventions that they be sent back to their own country.

It is unreasonable and unjustifiable for the US government and even the UN immigration agency to turn a blind eye to the fact they are illegal immigrants, especially since some of them are on the run having committed criminal offenses in China and some of them are deeply involved in terrorist activities, having been bewitched by extremist propaganda, while others have been coerced against their will and smuggled out of their own country.

The United States and some other countries and international organizations should first get to know the truth of the matter before they point accusing fingers at China and Thailand.

To call illegal immigrants "refugees" in the face of evidence that contradicts that claim will only militate against the international fight against the crime of illegal immigration.

To see those Uygurs who have been deeply involved in terrorist activities or even joined the Islamic State extremists as nationalists or political dissidents simply because they are Uygurs, who are trying to split Xinjiang from China for their own interests, only proves that the United States is using double standards in the fight against terrorism and extremism, which will prove to be detrimental to the concerted international efforts to combat these two evils.

It is also groundless for Washington and some other countries to assume that these illegal immigrants will suffer maltreatment in China. Those proved to be terrorists will receive due punishment according to the law, as will those who have committed criminal offenses, but arrangements will be made for the others to return home. This is how China will deal with these illegal immigrants.

To be clear about the facts first before wagging their tongues is the advice we give to those who make groundless accusations against China.

  • Group a building block for Africa

    An unusually heavy downpour hit Durban for two days before the BRICS summit's debut on African soil, but interest for a better platform for emerging markets were still sparked at the summit.