Tesla is being asked to shut down a newly opened showroom in the northwestern region of China called Xinjiang. The request comes from an American community that is trying to remind the electric car maker about the abuses and exploitation of Muslim ethnic minorities in that very region.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), an American organization based in Washington, D.C released a statement asking Tesla to withdraw from the region owing to the ill-treatment of Uyghur Muslim minority.
“No American corporation should be doing business in a region that is the focal point of a campaign of genocide targeting a religious and ethnic minority,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “Elon Musk and Tesla must close this new showroom and cease what amounts to economic support for genocide.”
Tesla had opened the new showroom in Urumqi last week on Friday. The company put out a social media post on China’s biggest social media platform Weibo. The post read, “Let’s start Xinjiang’s all-electric journey!”
Last month, CAIR welcomed US President Joe Biden’s signing of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act into law. CAIR also welcomed new sanctions by the Biden administration on several Chinese government entities and corporations over abuses they committed against Uyghur Muslims and other minorities.
According to the statement, CAIR recently called on the public not to make reservations at Hilton hotels due to that corporation’s licensing of a hotel on the site of a mosque demolished by the Chinese government in the Uyghur region.
Tesla hasn’t responded to the request as yet. The Chinese govt would like the electric car maker to stand by the govt’s official position on the matter. Tesla’s growing investment in the Chinese market could also deter the company from acting on the demands of CAIR.
US has also barred imports of goods from Xinjiang unless they can be shown not to be made by forced labor.
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