Just over one year after former prisoner of conscience and Uighur activist, Rebiya Kadeer was released from prison in China and went to the US, her remaining family members in Xinjiang were harrassed by the Chinese authorities. Kadeer’s three sons were soon facing criminal charges. And earlier today, two of them were sentenced. Alimu Ahbudurimu was sentenced to seven years in prison and fined for evading taxes. Kahaer Ahbudurimu was given a fine with no prison time. Meanwhile, Ablikim Abdiriyim is held in another detention center after being hospitalized from police beatings. Amnesty International questioned the charges being politically motivated because days before Kadeer was released from prison in 2005, she was warned to avoid other Uighurs in the US or her family members would pay the price. Therefore, her sons’ current situation is hardly a surprise. It is the Chinese authorities’ way of intimidating dissidents even if they are no longer in China.

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