Chinese Authorities Tortured Prominent Muslim Industrialist to Death, As Oppression of Uyghurs Continues

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Yaqub Haji, a prominent Uyghur muslim businessman and philanthropist was tortured and died in a prison in northwestern China’s Xinjiang region.

In a city in far northern Xinjiang near Kazakhstan, Yaqub Haji was one of two businessmen who donated money to the building of a mosque in Ghulja (in Chinese, Yining), before he was arrested on suspicion of “religious extremism” in 2018.

While explaining the death of the late Muslim philanthropist, Pakistani-American preacher and imam, Yasir Qadhi said:

“Yaqub Hajji, from the Uyghur community, was active in helping various causes, and when approached a few years ago by a local Imam to help build a masjid, he readily gave for its construction. This was deemed ‘support for terrorism’ by the Chinese authorities, who arrested and tortured him in order to extract a ‘confession’. He was kept in solitary confinement for over two years, and died in mysterious circumstances (despite being a healthy man in his 40s before his arrest). His deformed body was handed over to his relatives a few days ago for burial.

Last year, another prominent Uyghur activist was sentenced to death for having performed the Hajj some years back without obtaining necessary permission.

Allah help our Uyghur brothers and sisters who are literally being massacred simply for being Muslim. And Allah forgive all of us for not being able to do more for them.”

Some of his Uyghur friends in exile have confirmed that Yaqub Haji died while being detained in a Chinese government-run internment camp and that he was buried in Ghulja’s Karadong Cemetery, according to an RFA investigation of social media reports of Haji’s death.

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