Erdogan: Uiguren in China sind glücklich
Turkey recognizes the fact that the people of China's Xinjiang lead happy lives, Chinese state media on Tuesday cited Turkish President Tayip Erdogan as saying, a region where China has been running a controversial de-radicalization scheme.
China has faced growing international opprobrium for setting up what it calls vocation training centers to combat extremism in Xinjiang, home to the mostly Muslim Uighur people who speak a Turkic language, which many Western countries view as internment camps.
Turkey is the only Muslim nation to have regularly expressed concern about the situation in Xinjiang, including in February at the U.N. Human Rights Council, to China's anger.
But meeting Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, Erdogan struck a more positive note, according to a Chinese state media read out of the event.
"It is a fact that the peoples of China's Xinjiang region live happily in China's development and prosperity," state television paraphrased Erdogan as saying.
"Turkey does not permit any person to incite disharmony in the Turkey-China relationship. Turkey firmly opposes extremism and is willing to increase mutual political trust with China and strengthen security cooperation."