Rights body remembers Uyghur activist's sister who disappeared in China

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Activist Rushan Abbas with a poster of her sister, Gulshan Abbas.
Activist Rushan Abbas with a poster of her sister, Gulshan Abbas.

Washington [US], September 11 (ANI): US-based rights group Campaign For Uyghurs (CFU) marked three years since the disappearance of Uyghur Muslim Dr Gulshan Abbas, the sister of the group's Executive Director Rushan Abbas in China.

Gulshan's daughter Ziba Murat has launched a campaign calling for her mother's release on social media, CFU said in a statement on Saturday.

"September 11 marks three years since the disappearance of Dr Gulshan Abbas. Three years since her daughters have heard her voice. Three years deprived of her right to live a peaceful life as the peaceful person that she is. Three years held prisoner to punish her family members for speaking the truth about the Chinese regime's genocidal crimes against the Uyghurs," the statement added.

Earlier this year, the US had called for the release of Uyghur Muslim Dr Gulshan Abbas who was sentenced to 20 years of jail in China because of the activism of her family members.

Ziba Murat said, "We encourage all to participate in this campaign, calling for action on Dr Gulshan Abbas' detainment. Today is a sobering reminder that this genocide, for all of its geopolitical implications and global impacts, is fundamentally a destruction of families and people. Behind every condemnation and every rally is a mother, a daughter, a son, or a father who has had their life stolen from them. The face of this genocide is made up of people like Gulshan."

In January, Murat told a briefing organised with the bipartisan US Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) that their family had recently learned that her mother received the sentence in March 2019 on terrorism-related charges after disappearing in September 2018.

Gulshan is the sister of activist Rushan, who has been quite vocal about the Chinese Communist Party's atrocities against Muslim minorities in China.

Rushan Abbas, Executive Director of Campaign For Uyghurs (CFU) said, "This day marks one of the greatest horrors of my life, and yet what I feel is nothing compared to what my sister is being put through. When I close my eyes, I see her face, her smile, and it pushes me further in the fight for justice. I refuel my strength with the love I have for her and I hope that in my fight for her, the collective attention of the world is also centered on the Uyghur people. I will mark this day attending the Uyghur tribunal, and the significance of this platform for justice cannot be missed. My sister is many things: an Uyghur, a mother, a doctor, a sister, and a friend. None of these things are a crime, rather, they are markers of a brilliant and wonderful person. For her, and for all Uyghurs, we must fight on."

Dr Rishat Abbas, senior advisor of the World Uyghur Congress and Honorary Chairman of the Uyghur Academy, said of his sister's disappearance that "It is with a very heavy heart that another anniversary of this day passes. Each year that goes by was stolen from Gulshan and from her family as irreplaceable. Today, as all days, I pray for the safety of my sister and for all the Uyghurs who have been made victims of this brutal genocide." (ANI)

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