Lithuanian parliament latest to term China's treatment of Uyghurs 'genocide'

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Vilnius [Lithuania], May 21 (ANI): The parliament in Lithuania on Thursday became the latest to describe China's treatment of its Uyghur minority as "genocide", voting to call for a UN probe of the internment camps in the country's northwest region of Xinjiang.

Seimas, the unicameral parliament of Lithuania, also called for the repeal of the contentious National Security Law in Hong Kong that has led to the detention and criminal prosecution of pro-democracy advocates.

"The @LRSeimas passed a #resolution strongly condemning China's massive human rights abuses and crimes against humanity, and calling on its authorities to end the Uighur genocide, repeal the National Security Law in Hong Kong and withdraw its forces," Seimas said on Twitter.

World Uyghur Congress, a pro-Uyghur body welcomed the Lithuanian parliament's decision and thanked Lithuania MPs for their support.

"The Lithuanian parliament becomes the 4th parliament in the world to call the Uyghur crisis a genocide, after the parliaments in Canada, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and the United States govt labeled it a genocide. WUC thanks all Lithuania MPs for their support," World Uyghur Congress (WUC) tweeted.

The resolution, supported by three-fifths of Lithuanian parliament members, also called on China to let observers into Tibet and begin talks with Dalai Lama.

According to local reports, neither Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte nor Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis participated in the vote, despite being present in the parliament.

China has been rebuked globally for cracking down on Uyghur Muslims by sending them to mass detention camps, interfering in their religious activities and sending members of the community to undergo some form of forcible re-education.

So far, Canada, Netherlands, United Kingdom, and the United States have labeled the treatment of the Uyghurs Muslim minority in China as genocide.

Beijing, on the other hand, continues to deny that it is engaged in human rights abuses against the Uyghurs in Xinjiang despite reports from journalists, NGOs and former detainees highlighting the Chinese Communist Party's brutal crackdown on the ethnic community. (ANI)