China 'confirms' Uighur musician


China on Monday trashed Turkey's allegations that almost one million Uighur Muslims were subjected to torture and political brainwashing at concentration camps and prisons in the Xinjiang region.

"The Human Rights Council's integrity demands that states not allow China to hide behind its membership or economic might to escape accountability", he said. We expect this legitimate response to be taken into account'.

He also said he had been informed of the death of famed Uighur musician and poet Abdurehim Heyit, who was serving eight years in jail over one of his songs.

In the video, the poet states that he was being investigated for "allegedly violating national laws".

Hua called the Turkish foreign ministry's statement "vile", and said the claim of Heyit's death was an "absurd lie" and "extremely wrong".

Chinese Kazakhs have also fled overseas to avoid arbitrary detention, and the U.S. Embassy in Beijing on Monday said it was following the case of a one such man who had been fighting attempts by Beijing to return him to China from neighboring Uzbekistan.

On Saturday, in a rare move from a majority-Muslim power, the Turkish Foreign Ministry called on China to close its internment camps for Muslims, saying the camps said to hold a million ethnic Uighurs are a "great shame for humanity".

Turkey had said China's treatment of Uighurs was "a great embarrassment for humanity" - perhaps the strongest condemnation yet from a Muslim country.

Up to 1 million people, or about 7 percent of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have been incarcerated in an expanding network of "political re-education" camps, according to US officials and United Nations experts.

China's embassy in Ankara posted a lengthy response on its website that said Aksoy's accusations were false and urged the government to retract them.

"I'm now in good health and have never been abused", he said, according to the subtitled video.

On Saturday, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy said the man, named Abdurehim Heyit, died during his detention and cast the vocational programs as "torture and political brainwashing camps and prisons".

But critics say China is seeking to assimilate Xinjiang's minority population and suppress religious and cultural practices that conflict with Communist ideology and the dominant Han culture.

The Daily Telegraph was unable to confirm whether the video was authentic. The video released by China Radio International's Turkish-language service, said Turkey's criticism of China was unfounded.

After months of denying their existence, Chinese authorities, under increasing outside pressure, acknowledged the camps, terming them vocational training centres.

The Xinjiang region in China houses 10 million Uighurs, and make up 45 percent of the population in the region.