Blackburn Labels Chinese Actions Against Uyghurs “Genocide”

November 12, 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Marsha Blackburn (R—Tenn.) joined Senators John Cornyn (R—Texas) and Bob Menendez (D—N.J.) in a bipartisan resolution to recognize the People’s Republic of China engaging in a genocide of the Uyghur people.

“In Xinjiang, Xi Jinping has ordered the systemic targeting and elimination of the Uyghur people through mass surveillance, population control and internment camps. The Chinese government regularly forces Uyghur women to undergo abortions and sterilizations,” said Senator Blackburn. “It’s time to call the Chinese Communist Party’s actions what they are: not only crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing, nor atrocities – but a genocide. The Administration and the United Nations should formally make this designation so that we can move forward with the full weight of international law to hold China accountable for its actions.”

The Resolution:

  • Declares the Chinese government is currently perpetrating a genocide in Xinjiang and urges the Administration to take action to compel China to cease its atrocities;
  • Urges all national governments and international organizations, including the United Nations (UN), to call China’s atrocities genocide;
  • Urges UN member states to bar China from membership of any UN councils or components overseeing human rights.


The United States has only formally designated the abuses against a population as genocide a handful of times in history, most recently with the designation of genocide against Christians and Yazidis by ISIS in 2016. Defined as “…acts committed with the intent to destroy in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial, or religious group,” by Article 2 of the Convention of the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, genocide is a crime under international law and a great tragedy for humanity.