New Delhi: After China’s strong protest, India has cancelled its visa to dissident Uyghur leader Dolkun Isa, citing Interpol’s red corner notice against him.
Isa, a leader of the World Uyghur Congress (WUC) who lives in Germany, had been invited to a conference being organised by the US-based ‘Initiatives for China’. Uyghurs and many other Chinese dissidents in exile were expected to attend the conference in India and discuss democratic transformation in China.
India’s decision to permit WUC leaders whom China regards as backers of terrorism in its volatile Muslim-dominated Xinjiang province was reported to be in response to Beijing blocking India’s bid to get Jaish-e-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar banned by the UN.
China’s unhappiness about reports that Dolkun had been given the visa was reflected in Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying saying, “What I want to point out is that Dolkun is a terrorist in red notice of the Interpol and Chinese police. Bringing him to justice is due obligation of relevant countries.”
When asked about the issue, external affairs ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup had said,”We have seen the media reports and external affairs ministry is trying to ascertain the facts.”
Xinjiang, which has over 10 million Uyghurs of Turkik origin Muslims, has been on the boil for several years. Uyghurs have been protesting the large-scale settlements in Xinjiang by Han Chinese.