Ablimit Tursun in Belgium, in an undated photo. Credit: Ablimit Tursun
Uighur in Belgium fears for family after asylum snag
  • Tue, 10/01/2019 - 21:03

AFP News
1 October 2019

An Uighur refugee living in Belgium complained Tuesday that Chinese authorities had cracked down on his family after they applied for the right to join him.

Abdulhamid Tursun's case has raised controversy in Belgium, where rights groups accuse the Belgian authorities of having effectively "delivered up" his relatives to the Chinese.

In May, Tursun's wife and four children visited the Belgian embassy in Beijing to seek visas to join him, but left after they were told they must first have Chinese passports.

Now they are back in their home in Urumqi, Xinjiang, and under what the refugee, now living in Ghent, said was increasing official pressure from a government that has cracked down on Uighurs.

"They are at home, under surveillance, and don't have the right to leave without authorisation," the 51-year-old told AFP in Brussels.