Chinese Government Channel Banned Arsenal Match with Man City due to Uighurs
The Chinese government channel, “CCTV”, prevented Arsenal’s match with Manchester City from its daily broadcast schedule, against the backdrop of criticism of the German soccer star Masoud Özil, for the Chinese authorities’ treatment of the Muslim Uighur minority.
The channel was due to broadcast Arsenal’s match with Manchester City, which will take place later on Sunday, in the English Premier League football activities, but it declined to do so because of Özil’s criticism.
Özil published a statement on social media, during which he criticized the policies China pursues with Uighur Muslims.
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A state media report by The Global Times confirmed that the match between Manchester City and Arsenal had been pre-empted because of comments that Mr. Özil made Friday on Twitter that excoriated China over the mass detention of Uighurs, a largely Muslim Turkic minority in Xinjiang, in northwestern China.
China Central Television instead aired a match between Tottenham Hotspur and the Wolverhampton Wanderers, with state media characterizing Mr. Özil’s comments as “false” and saying that he had “disappointed” Chinese soccer fans.
Mr. Özil, who is from Germany and is of Turkish heritage, sought to draw attention to the internment of Muslims in China with his posts on Friday: “They shut down their mosques. They ban their schools. They kill their holy men. The men are forced into camps and their families are forced to live with Chinese men,” read identical posts on Mr. Özil’s Twitter and Instagram accounts.
More than a million people from the Muslim Uighur minority are subjected to numerous violations by the Chinese authorities, such as torture, deprivation of the most basic rights and others, according to human rights organizations and the United Nations, which the Chinese authorities deny and claim to rehabilitate them.