In the News: China Cracks Down on the Hui Minority

News coverage on crackdowns in China have predominantly covered the plight of the Uighurs. However, efforts to strip the members of the Hui minority in China of their religious heritage are underway. The Hui, who number 10 million, hoped that the state crackdown would not arrive in the Gansu province, as it had in Xinjiang. 

There are two major Muslim ethnic groups in China: the Hui and the Uyghurs. The Hui are the largest Muslim ethnic group in China, with a population estimated to be around 11 million. Hui can be found throughout China, although the majority are concentrated in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. They are ethnically Chinese, speak Mandarin as their native tongue, and aside from abstaining from pork and alcohol, share a very similar diet to the Han Chinese.

As reported in the Washington Post, “Under its leader, Xi Jinping, China’s government has intensified efforts to assimilate ethnic minorities and curtail religions, such as Islam, that it considers carriers of foreign influence.” It has been reported that, in the region, the Qur’an is banned from sale, stores are stripped of their ḥalāl signage, and local publishers who printed the Ḥadīth are jailed. 

Under China’s Constitution, Islamic law (sharīʿa or fiqh) has no legal status. For more information, visit China’s Country Profile. 

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