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Is China adopting double standards on fighting terrorism?
March 20,2019   By:CGTN
March 20, 2019 -- Since last year, there has been a mounting chorus of Western criticism on China, which accuses the country of setting up detention centers across its Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, constituting what some call staggering human rights violations. 
 
However, the country has repeatedly refuted the claim by saying that it has been running "vocational training camps" instead which is intended partly to stamp out local extremist inclinations. On Monday, the government released a white paper elaborating on its efforts to counter terrorism and protect human rights in Xinjiang.
 
Trying to poke holes in such an explanation, a recent article on The Diplomat pointed out Beijing's "inconsistency" and "hypocrisy" on the issue, which says that the country, while "claiming to be cracking down on terrorism," has time and again refused to add Masood Azhar, the leader of the militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed in Pakistan, to the UN's global terrorist blacklist.
 
First of all, not making China's position on Masood Azhar the focal point of this piece, the issue is still worth explaining. There is no escaping that Pakistan and China do have cordial relations, which might affect China's position on the issue. However, that happens to virtually every country. More importantly, Long Xingchun, a professor at the School of Foreign Languages of China West Normal University, pointed out that India's "verdict" on Masood was based on assumptions rather than "concrete evidence" that is essential to prove Masood Azhar was directly behind a series of terrorist attacks in India.
 
"In the absense of such evidencie, China has a good reason for not backing the designation, not to mention that countries around the world frankly also disagree on how they define terrorism," said Long.
 
Second, coming back to the "revelation" that China adopts double standards on terrorism, as a matter of fact, the West is in no position to point fingers at China on the issue. They should have a look at how it has reacted to terrorist attacks in China and those in the West. It is conspicuous that when it comes to such attacks in China they have demonstrated much less sympathy than otherwise would have been seen in such incidents in Western countries.
 
For example, the New Zealand mass shooting that claimed 50 lives and caused 50 injuries last week has plunged the Western world into grief. 
 
While Western reporters have been emphatic with their sympathy for victims of the incident, condemning the heartless murderer who was reported to be a white supremacist that denounced immigrants as "invaders" and appeared unapologetic for his anti-immigrant rhetoric, they were hesitant to do the same with similar events in China.
 
For example, when covering a terrorist attack that killed 31 people in China's Kunming City in 2014, rather than "praising the heroism of people on the scene" that was seen on Western media with the New Zealand shooting, a common Western report would instead draw attention to "rights groups" in China that "accuse China's government of cultural and religious repression".
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