The attendees included IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation chairman BülentYıldırım, East Turkistan Education and Solidarity Association chairman HidayetOğuzhan, East Turkistan Foundation secretary-general ÖmerKul, secretary-general of the Union of NGOs of the Islamic World Ali Kurt, Love and Solidarity Association chairman Yusuf Yusufoğlu, chairman of the Turkey’s Foundation for Volunteer Organizations NecatiCeylan, chairman of East Turkistan Youth and Culture Association Tibet Yücetürk, Civilian Solidarity Platform chairman AyhanOgan, East Turkistan Immigrants Association chairman Yakup Can and Mazlumder deputy chairman RamazanBeyhan.
Speaking ahead of the press conference, IHH chairman Yıldırım said “China is massing troops in East Turkistan as 5 July is approaching. China is preparing for a massacre. They say their response will be tough. Islamic countries should immediately convene and impose sanctions on China. All commercial ties with China should be suspended. Today we live in a world where communication is established easily. Every leader is responsible for protecting the oppressed anywhere in the world.”
Yıldırım warned that people around the world would start thronging the streets if China carried on with besiege in the region. “International organizations only produce reports in the wake of massacres. However, academics at universities do the same job. These organizations are not serving their actual objectives. I call on the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League; we are not silent on developments in the Middle East. You should also demonstrate in the streets in support of East Turkistan because there is no difference between a woman killed in East Turkistan, in Damascus, in Istanbul, in al-Quds or in Baghdad.”
After the opening speech of IHH chairman, East Turkistan Education and Solidarity Association chairman HidayetOğuzhan read out the press release. The following is the text of the press release:
“On Wednesday June 26, clashes broke out in the ancient East Turkistani city of Turpan between a group of Uyghur youngsters and occupying Chinese forces. More than 10 Uyghur youngsters were reported to have been martyred in the clashes. The Chinese media reported the events to the world public with distortion. As in similar events before, Chinese media described the events in Turpan as acts of organized terror.
What really happened in Turpan is as follows: The Chinese government has been implementing a policy of genocide in East Turkistan for 64 years. It is also occupying land of the local people to provide means of livelihood to the Chinese population settled in East Turkistan. Even verbal reaction from the local population against the breach of their rights is branded terrorism. This is the reason why the events in Turpan broke out. A group of Uyghur youths who had been evicted from their homes and fields rebelled and China suppressed uprising with force. Inhabitants of Hoten staged a rally to protest the Chinese response to the events but Chinese security forces tried to quell the protests with firearms, resulting in 26 deaths. In the wake of the events, the Chinese authorities cut all means of communications in the region and blocked healthy reporting on the unrest.
Determined to suppress the riots with any means necessary, the Chinese government massed troops in the regional capital Urumqi. We condemn untimely and disproportionate actions of China as the anniversary of the 5 July 2009 Urumqi massacre is approaching. Global Times, official Chinese newspaper, attempted to distort the events and targeted East Turkistan Education and Solidarity Association. We reject China’s groundless and dirty accusations.
Lastly we want to add that what happened is a popular reaction to oppressive practices of China in East Turkistan and settlement policies. We want NGOs in Turkey, the UN, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the EU, and the Human Rights Watch to ask China for information on the events, send an independent delegation to the region, and force China to end its oppressive policies. In this regard, members of the press bear the significant responsibility of communicating the scream of over 35 million Muslim Turks.”