Uyghur survivors from Chinese internment camps rallied outside the United Nations office in Geneva last April 25, marking the start of a weeklong protest to get an audience with the UN Human Rights High Commissioner, Michelle Bachelet.

Qelbinur Sidiq, Gulbahar Jelilova, Gulbahar Haitiwaji, and Omir Bekali are part of the Uyghur, a predominantly Muslim minority that resides in the north-west Chinese region of Xinjiang. The four came to Geneva to talk with Bachelet and convince her to release a report detailing the human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

Bachelet announced last month that an agreement had been made with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to visit the country, which includes a trip to the controversial region. However, the protestors doubt that the Chinese will allow the UN Commissioner to see the real atrocities in Xinjiang.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet during a press conference addressing war crimes in Ukraine (UN Human Rights Council/Twitter)

“We’re all fully aware that China is a very crafty and deceptive country extremely skillful at choreographing fake people and fake stages,” said Haitiwaji.

Haitiwaji was arrested by Chinese authorities in 2017, during a time of mass detentions of Muslim minority groups, including the Uyghurs, on the premise of religious extremism and other charges.

“What worries me most is that it’s really not useful but damaging if Michelle Bachelet does not see the real genocide and real repression, but only meets with the people and fake stages set up by China,” she added.

Jelilova, who was detained for 15 months on accusations of aiding terrorism, even offered to accompany the UN in the excursion to the province.

“I’d be happy to take them to the camps and prisons in Urumqi,” Jelilova said. She adds that she can show the UN team a facility where Uyghurs were executed and identify a hospital used for harvesting the organs of dead prisoners.