Xinjiang Divestment Campaign for Western Investors

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The widespread reports of mass detentions and surveillance of Uighur in the Xinjiang region, throughout China, and around the world by Chinese Communist Party officials have raised the concern of the international community. 

The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination notes its concern over:

…reports of detention of large numbers of ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities held incommunicado and often for long periods, without being charged or tried, under the pretext of countering terrorism and religious extremism….Reports of mass surveillance disproportionately targeting ethnic Uighurs, including through frequent baseless police stops and the scanning of mobile phones at police checkpoint stations…Reports that all XUAR residents are required to hand in their travel documents to police and apply for permission to leave the country, and that permission may not come for years…Reports that many Uighurs abroad who left China have allegedly been returned to the country against their will.

The many documented reports of racially discriminatory surveillance and detention of Uighur in Xinjiang shock the conscience. The tales from inside re-education camps of psychological warfare and borderline torture like conditions demand a response. The Chinese Communist Party is detaining professors who merely research Xinjiang to create mass camps for children whose parents have been detained.  Current reports estimate that China is detaining as many as one million people for no crime other than their ethnicity and religious belief. 

In implementing its detention and surveillance plan, the Chinese Communist Party has relied on publicly held companies specializing in surveillance and security products and services.  HIKVision and Dahua Technology are two primary companies that have received significant contracts to implement surveillance and security software in Xinjiang to aid in the detention of Uighurs.

HIKVision and Dahua as publicly companies listed on the Shenzhen stock exchange have received significant investment from international investors such as Morgan Stanley and BNP Paribas.  Additionally, both are on the list of stocks which receive MSCI passive inflows from international investors investing in China.

It is concerning that Morgan Stanley, BNP Paribas, and MSCI have invested or channel investments into companies engaging in mass detainment and surveillance based on ethnicity.  We call on all international investor to divest any holdings in HIKVision and Dahua and other names who may be profiting from this campaign. 

It is important to note that Morgan Stanley, BNP Paribas, and MSCI had long term plans or holdings and do not appear to have collaborated, known of beforehand, or approved of the mass internment.  However, it must be brought to their attention that the international community will not tolerate channeling investment capital to these companies.

In the days and weeks ahead, we will be contacting these and potentially other companies hoping they will make the right choice in addressing this tragic human rights violation.

Please sign your name if you support divestment by these companies and other investors of these companies actively engaged in human rights violations.