The Chinese embassy in Canada has condemned Canada after the House of Commons passed a motion declaring China’s treatments of Uyghurs to be a genocide.

In a statement, a spokesperson called the motion passed Monday a “gross interference in China’s internal affairs and a malicious provocation against the 1.4 billion Chinese people.”

“They have been engaged in political manipulation on Xinjiang-related issues under the pretext of human rights, in an attempt to interfere in China’s internal affairs and earn political capital by playing China card. How hypocritical and despicable!” the statement said.

“They are still trying to continue to poke their nose into China in the 21st century. How arrogant and ignorant!” 

The Conservative motion declared that China’s mass-internment and abuse of Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims in Xinjiang province amount to genocide. An amendment also called for the Beijing 2022 Olympics to be relocated from China should the genocide continue.

The motion passed 266-0. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau skipped the vote, with Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau abstaining on behalf of the government.

The embassy cited Xinjiang’s economic and population growth as evidence that residents of the territory are not being abused. The spokesperson claimed that Canada’s motion will not change the Chinese approach.

“The Canadian side’s attempt to contain China’s development through the afore-mentioned Xinjiang-related motion will never succeed. We urge these politicians to face the fact, stop interfering in China’s internal affairs, stop using the Xinjiang-related issue to seek their own interests, and stop engaging in the anti-China farce, otherwise they will end up humiliating themselves.”

Speaking to CPAC following the vote, Chinese Ambassador to Canada Cong Peiwu echoed similar sentiments and did not rule out some sort of retaliation against Canada for the motion.

Over 1 million Uyghurs have been put in internment camps in recent years, amounting to around 10% of the entire Uyghur population.

While the Chinese government claims these camps are for education and fighting radicalism, witnesses and observers have seen evidence of forced labour and widespread physical and sexual abuse.

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