Morocco’s extradition of Uyghur activist to China would violate international law

December 17, 2021

UN human rights experts called on Morocco’s government Thursday to halt a decision to extradite a Uyghur activist to China, where they said he risks facing severe human rights violations.

The experts said human rights defender Yidiresi Aishan, a Chinese Muslim and member of China’s Uyghur minority, faces risks such as arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance, torture, and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

This extradition process is happening without any form of individual examination and assessment of risks, which blatantly violates the absolute prohibition of refoulement under international human rights and refugee law,” they said in a statement.

Chinese authorities accused Aishan of joining a terrorist group, the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM), and carrying out or actively participating in activities within terrorist organizations under Article 120 of the Chinese Criminal Code.

The experts include Nils Melzer, the special rapporteur on torture and other inhuman treatment, Fionnuala Ni Aolain, the special rapporteur on protecting human rights while countering terrorism, and Mary Lawler, the special rapporteur on human rights defenders.

Aishan was arrested in Casablanca, based on a Red Notice issued by the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) on March 13, 2017. The warrant was suspended in August 2021. On Interpol see also:

As an asylum seeker in Morocco, Aishan should be protected from any form of extradition or forced return to China until his refugee status is decided, they said. The experts emphasized that the existence of a bilateral agreement on extradition, or diplomatic assurances, do not release states from their obligations under international human rights and refugee law, in particular the principle of non-refoulment.

On 19 June 2022:

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