Recently, we linked to a video of a spokesman for the Turkistan Islamic Party (Türkistan Islam Partiyisi (TIP) تۈركىستان ئىسلام پارتىيىسى) responding to the news that 9 Uyghurs had been arrested in Pakistan and extradited to the PRC, apparently under accusation of belonging to the TIP. Below is a translation of that video. The following is a collaborative work and owes special thanks to a true expert. As usual, commentary follows the text.
“On the Pakistani and Chinese media full of nonsense”
In the Name of God the Most Merciful, the Most Kind
Praise be to God, and Prayers and Salutations to the Prophet of God. But now,
In order to achieve its own political goals, the Chinese government, a habitual braggart who is always making up ridiculous things, has in recent times changed its methods, and having taught this game to Pakistan and other of its lackeys, has begun to play it together.
To people of sound mind, this is not something secret.
In this unsightly political game, where the second list of terrorism suspects came to nothing, the Chinese government had conducted itself in a way not befitting the government of a state, and had been disgraced before the people of the world.
In Afghanistan, the American government, in need of help in today’s difficult circumstances where they cannot do without a crutch, made China happy by labeling the Turkistan Islamic Party as terrorists and obtained China’s economic, political, and some military assistance.
In this situation, the Chinese government happily stained its lips and once again set about playing with the government of Pakistan internationally. According to what is known of this game, nine Uyghur members of the Turkistan Islamic Party, which has organized attacks on the Pakistani Security Forces, were supposedly arrested and handed over to China.
The Chinese government, which has all the time been imprisoning the people of Eastern Turkistan without reason, making false accusations and deceiving people, had in recent months, through the hands of its concubine Pakistan, arrested several Eastern Turkistanis occupied with their own private studies and business in Lahore and other cities.
In this way, the Chinese government has sought to show that it is a powerful country can challenge the Turkistan Islamic Party and to
break the spirit of pious Muslims living inside and outside the motherland. The Pakistani government has made this empty disclosure aiming to show its collaboration with the Chinese government against the Turkistan Islamic Party through concrete actions, and that it is reducing the pressure on both sides by blocking the flow of Eastern Turkistani Muslims to the jihad region of Pakistan and Afghanistan with the goal of preparing for jihad.
In recent times, the Pakistan government has not captured or handed over to China a single member of the Turkistan Islamic Party.
A state with the slightest sense of honor would of course not take pride in such falsification. Thus it would be best for the Pakistan and Chinese governments to tidy up this foolish propaganda which is now exposed. Likewise, the world’s news agencies would save themselves embarrassment if they more carefully relayed the propaganda of these states who go around making atom bombs out of “hot air.”
We would like to openly warn you: If any country captures a member of the Turkistan Islamic Party and hands them over to China, they will definitely receive a concrete response. This response, of course, will not be something for them to hear, but to see.
It will be most beneficial for the people of the world, among them the people of Eastern Turkistan, to clearly comprehend that, in the view of the Chinese, each
Eastern Turkistani living abroad, no matter who they are, is an enemy and terrorist. Their strongest desire is to seize them one by one, or group by group if possible, not leaving a single one, and imprison them and their land Eastern Turkistan.
For this reason, we honestly recommend that all the oppressed people of Eastern Turkistan living in exile stand alert on full guard against this viciousness of the Chinese government.
I feel very strongly that the speaker has Yarkand accent. The “r”s are a giveaway, as they are sometimes American and sometimes palatal glides. Note also his raised vowels and some odd moments where he seems to palatalize what would be a stop consonant in standard Uyghur, i.e. äjiship instead of ägiship. This may be immaterial. The last time we saw a video like this was when TIP spokesman Sayfullah threatened the Olympic Games. It was difficult to make much out, but he certainly rolled his “r”s.
On another linguistic note, this video uses, for the first time in my experience, the term hijrät to refer to the Uyghur diaspora. Hijrät, from Arabic, means “flight,” as in the hijra, when Muhammed fled from Mecca to Medina. This is an interesting cue, doubtless employed self-consciously, to emphasize Islamic, rather than ethnic or national, kinship. A brief, unscientific survey of secular Uyghurs shows me that this usage is highly marked, creative, and clearly charged with Islamic symbolism.
Similarly, the speaker only uses the word “Uyghur” once, preferring “East Turkestani.” As I noted in a recent post on an interview with Rabiyä Qadir, this is language that makes the problems in Xinjiang more than Uyghur issues. While Rabiyä Qadir reaches beyond Uyghurs to anyone living in the region, emphasizing cooperation with non-Muslims for the sake of national self-determination, the TIP plays up the Muslim angle. This is more likely to inspire violence within Xinjiang, but Islam could be a much better catalyst for action in Xinjiang, especially among rural Turkic Muslims who have not completely internalized the idea of an ethnonational identity.
Finally, catch the last line of the speech. “…stand alert on full guard…” If you’re a terrorist, scaring the people for whom you claim to struggle, putting them on “alert,” is a great way to get them to do your job for you.