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REVIEW OF THE SOURCES RELIED UPON MY MR. ZENZ IN HIS JPR ARTICLE TO SUPPORT THE CLAIM THAT THERE ARE 1.5 MILLION MUSLIM MINORITY PEOPLE DETAINED IN WORK-EDUCATION CENTERS IN XINJIANG
August 9, 2020
Page 11 from Mr. Zenz’s article in the JPR:
“The total number of persons in Xinjiang who have gone through some form of internment since 2016 or 2017 must be very substantial. A government notice from Akedunjiemi Village, Selibuya Township, Bachu County (Kashgar Prefecture) about political and social control work in villages mentions the use of the 4th re-education facility on the list: “strengthen re-education, send focus persons and daily management persons in separate batches to the township legal system training school [ ] to implement transformation through education”. The context makes it clear that this form of re-education targets persons that are considered to be more “problematic”. The document also indicates the scale of the detentions. In that particular village in 2016, of 1,750 persons (of all ages), 110 were subjected to re-education in the legal system training school. This ﬁgure represents 6.3 percent of the total population or 9.3 percent of the adult population. Given that this was before the massive re-education internment campaign in spring 2017, the total number of Uyghurs and other Turkic minorities who have gone through some form of extrajudicial internment since then appears to be very substantial.”
This link leads to a document issued by an organ of the CCP (Exhibit 1):
It concerns issues relating to census and population statistics.
The only reference to 110 people is the following:
The document relates how the population has changed from 469 households and 1,750 people up 103 households and 19 people from the previous census.
The passage “梳理出3类人员及家属110人” appears to refer the total of people who are either in custody, in criminal detention or in work-education detention.
Please see : http://www.xjcoop.com/index.aspx?lanmuid=93&sublanmuid=709&id=1676, which appears to be a local CCP organization, where “3类人员” is defined as follows:
Mr. Zenz appeared to assume that all 110 people referred to are in work-education camps, but he does not explain or justify any such inference.
The percentage of the population in jail in China as a whole is well below 1% and the number of people in custody is unknown.
Zenz does not indicate whether every “三学” is in each case necessarily in detention or only some part thereof, and if so what portion.
Zenz does not indicate whether the 110 in question were throughout the year, or on a given day of the year or whether it includes all people detained for any period of time during the year.
Using Zenz’s 6.3% of population as corresponding to the correct percentage, the extrapolation to the total number of detainees in work-education camps would be of the order of 1.3 million.
Extrapolating from 110 people to a population of some 21 million also raises serious question of reliability in terms of statistical science.
This note does not contain any source but instead the following text:
”Based on the 2015 mini census (2015 1% ) for Bachu County and Xinjiang. The population aged 0-17 years was estimated based on the 0-14 year cohort from the 2015 mini census and the 15-19 year cohort (multiplied by 0.5) from the 2010 census. Rapid population growth in Uyghur majority regions means that using 2015 census data makes for a much more accurate estimate than solely relying on the 2010 census data.”
In short, nothing in the sources cited by Mr. Zenz supports his claim that there 110 people of Muslim minorities in work-education centers in this location.
Also，extrapolation form one village to the entire population of villages in Xinjiang is not reliable in terms of statistical analysis.
Page 11 from Mr. Zenz’s article in the JPR:
“Xinjiang’s budget shows that in 2018, the regional government gave 1.59 billion RMB of food allowance subsidies for VTIC persons (zhiye jiaoyu peixun xueyuan ) to its minority prefectures, most of it to Uyghur majority regions. It is possible that the prefectures and counties supplement this further with their own funding, although the author did not analyze this in detail. Witness accounts note that VTIC meals are extremely low in quality and quantity. If we take the Chinese military’s food allowance for ordinary soldiers of 11 RMB per person per day as the standard and assume that local regions do not furnish any additional funds, that would mean that these subsidies could have fed about 395,000 persons. If the cost (and quality) of the food given to VTIC detainee is only half that of the average PLA soldier, which appears more than likely, then that ﬁgure doubles. If detainees were on a very poor diet below common calorie intake requirements for adults, and we assumed a daily food allowance of 4.5 RMB (such as 1.5 RMB per meal with three daily meals), the VTIC detainee ﬁgure could be just below one million. Given that the VTICs appear to be one of the most prevalent forms of internment, such numbers are generally within a realistic range.”
It leads to a table表十二：2019年自治区本级一般公共预算
政府预算支出经济分类明细表, in short the public budget for autonomous districts. (Exhibit 2)
The link in Mr. Zenz‘s article leads to the general site of the Xinjiang Government and it does not seem possible to verify that the tables were actually produced by the Xinjiang Government.
The tables themselves bear no markings of the Government.
But supposing the tables to be authentic, the years 2018 and 2019, there are allocations respectively of 1.9392 billion RMB and 1.9082 billion RMB.
The allocations are for “陪训 费“ （pei xun fei）, which I translate as expenses for education.
So these amounts are not limited, as claimed by Mr. Zenz to “zhiyejiaoyuxueyuan”, i.e. the work-education centers where the Muslim minorities are detained. They appear to concern all expenses related to education.
Nothing would indicate that the funds are only for food expenses, as claimed by Mr. Zenz.
Instead, the expenses cover all “机关商品和服务支付“，； i.e；”organizations’payments for products and services”
On a different table covering “Subsidies from the Autonomous Region to Localities” (Exhibit 3)， there does appear line for ‘职业教育培训中心学员伙食费补助 » corresponding to a total of 1.58 billion RMB, which are allocated as follows:
Yili Prefecture 200 million
Aksu Area 250 million
Kyzyl Suzhou 10 million
Kashgar Area 660 million
Hotan 360 million
One might expect that this note would lead to a calculation of how Mr. Zenz arrives at a number of 395,000.
Instead, the links cited refer to two documents
[ 2007-07-18 09:14 ]
i.e. a comparison in China Daily of expenses for the Chinese, American and Russian militaries.
The data relate to 2007. (Exhibit 4)
解放军目前的伙食费标准分别为：一类灶每人每天１１元、二类灶１３元、三类灶２３元、四类灶３９元，(i.e. food expenses would have ranged between 1,1 RB per day per person or as high as 3.9 RMB depending on the class of the personnel)
2. A. web site operated by a Taiwanese meals Management Services Limited Company that is has passed ISO9001: 2000 international certification system for food service businesses. Specializes in the construction and food canteen contractor, canteen kitchen production installation, canteen ingredients distribution, fast food distribution and banquets. (Exhibit 5)
It proposes a range of meals with budgets for a balanced diet.
The budgets range between 8 and 18 yuan per day.
The crucial variable in extrapolating from the food budget to the number of detainees is the cost of the food.
Depending on whether the cost taken is 1.1 RMB per meal or 3.9 RMB, the number of people that would be fed over one year varies from 372 322 to 1 320 050. If the costs were adjusted for inflation (21.1% over the 2007-2019 period), then the budget could have fed from 310,265 to 1,0910,950 people per year. (Exhibit 5)
Page 11 of Mr. Zenz’s JPR article
“Speciﬁcally, Kashgar Prefecture alone received 666 million RMB in such food subsidies, suﬃcient for about 166,000 VTIC persons at the average PLA soldier’s daily allowance level, which equates to approximately 5.4 percent of that region’s adult population (in 2018). Again, this would refer to only one of up to 8 forms of extrajudicial internment. If the daily allowance were less than at the PLA, which is more than likely given witness statements, or if the prefecture added its own funding to this budget, then the number of VTIC detainees alone could be around 10 percent. Together with other forms of internment, Kashgar Prefecture’s internment share could be signiﬁcantly higher than 10 percent. The same ﬁgures for Hotan Prefecture are very similar. With VTIC food subsidies of 360 million RMB and assuming the daily PLA food allowance rate, the share of its adult population detained in VTICs alone would amount to 5.5 percent (about 90,000 persons). Again, the actual share is likely substantially higher than this rather conservative estimate.”
This note leads to a Kashgar Government document concerning economic and social statistics issued on April 30, 2019.
Mr. Zenz does not explain his calculations.
He refers to the amounts for food subsidies referred to above but does not specify which cost of meals he has used. (Exhibit 6)
Supposing that the percentages of the population in detention centers were accurate (5.5%), the total number of detainees in Xinjiang would be 621,682 to 741,106 depending on whether only Uyghurs were considered to be targeted or all Muslim minorities.
11 303 300
1 591 200
13 165 569