China says ‘preventive’ work in Xinjiang detention camps should be applauded

China’s counter-terrorism and de-radicalisation efforts in its far western region of Xinjiang should be applauded for creating a new method of tackling the problem, a senior diplomat told foreign envoys last week.

China is stepping up its diplomatic outreach over controversial detention camps in the heavily Muslim region, inviting more foreign diplomats to visit as it seeks to head off criticism from Muslim-majority nations and at the United Nations.

The government says the camps are re-education and training facilities, and have been highly successful in stopping attacks previously blamed on Islamist militants and separatists, but rights groups say they are internment camps