The latest news out of China’s Xinjiang comes from a really interesting article at The Diplomat By Rustem Shir:
In the Chinese Communist Party’s drive to erase markers of Uyghur identity, the Uyghur language is a target because it is a Turkic language with many words of Arabic origin, and loanwords from Persian, and written in an Arabic-based script. These aspects of the Uyghur language serve to connect Uyghurs with Turkic and Islamic communities. The CCP seeks to sever these affinities and is using Mandarin language assimilation as a tool to reorient Uyghur identity.
This motive serves as the foundation of the Chinese government’s decades-long strategy to normalize Mandarin as the primary language of communication for the ethnic minority communities of Xinjiang. As part of this plan, CCP language policy on education has shifted from the tolerance of ethnic minority languages to their prohibition, concurrent with the promotion of Mandarin.
See full story here.