China sanctions Belgian MP for Uyghur genocide resolution

Following a debate on Apr 22, the House of Commons passed unopposed, a non-binding resolution condemning "mass human rights abuses and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang. (Photo courtesy: IPD)

(, Jun19’21) – Next time China wishes to send a propaganda delegation of Tibetan or other members of its parliament, the National People’s Congress, to the Belgian Parliament, the latter should subject it to at least one condition – lift the sanction on its MP Samuel Cogolati.

On Jun 15, the Belgian Parliament passed a joint motion recognising crimes against humanity and a ‘serious risk of genocide’ being perpetrated against the Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang.

It called on the Belgian Government to terminate its bilateral extradition treaty with China and to block the ratification of the now frozen EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI). And the resolution will be confirmed by a plenary session in the country’s House of Representatives on Jul 1.

Samuel Cogolati,
Member of Belgian Parliament.

China not only severely criticized that motion but also said on Jun 16 that it had decided to sanction the member of parliament, Samuel Cogolati, who authored the Uyghur motion.

Addressing a press conference, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said, “The allegation of ‘genocide’ in Xinjiang is a total rumour and lie fabricated by people with ulterior motives. The real intention is to disrupt Xinjiang’s social stability and contain China’s development.”

The adoption of the motion in the Belgian Parliament came shortly after a hearing on the question of Uyghur genocide was held in the Belgian Parliament’s External Affairs Commission. Former camp teacher Qelbinur Sidik described the horrific conditions inside the camps, highlighting systematic rape, torture, sexual abuse, and other forms of severe maltreatment.

Over the past four months, the Canadian, Dutch, British, Lithuanian, and Czech parliaments adopted motions recognising the Uyghur crisis as either genocide or genocidal.


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