Banner image: Ethnic Uighurs go about their daily lives in Xinjiang's famed Silk Road city of Kashgar in China's far northwestern, mainly Muslim Xinjiang region.
Photo: Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images
On July 14, 2009, Dr. Wenran Jiang, Mactaggart Research Chair and Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Alberta, was interviewed by KCRW Radio on the July 6 Uyghur riots occurred in the capital of China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.
First the Tibetans, now the Uighurs, are challenging China's central authority. Can 56 very different cultural and linguistic groups continue to get along?
During the interview, Dr. Jiang said that Han population in the Xinjiang Region has grown from 6 percent to over 40 percent now, but the current migration trend is motivated more by economic opportunism of the "outsiders". Nevertheless, many Uyghurs view this as an infringement over their lives and interests. The tension is on the rise and it threatens stability in the region.
You can listen to the entire audio clip available on the KCRW website. Wenran's comment starts around at 31:00 minutes from the beginning.