The deplorable mass sentencing of 55 people at a stadium in China’s north-western Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region [XUAR] is no solution to addressing public security fears, said Amnesty International.
Fifty five people, believed to be mostly Muslim Uighurs, were sentenced for terrorism, separatism and murder. Three were sentenced to death.
“Those responsible for the recent violent attacks have shown a callous disregard for human life and must be held to account. But speedy show trials will not deliver justice for the victims. Hastily sentencing people after unfair trials will only exacerbate tensions in the region,” said William Nee, China researcher at Amnesty International.
The sentencing took place in front of more than 7,000 people, state media reported on Wednesday.
All of those sentenced are believed to be at risk of torture in detention. The local Communist Party leader, Zhang Chunxian said recently that suspected criminals should be “severely punished” before trial.