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November 19, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Chinese president Xi Jinping ordered his regime to show “absolutely no mercy” to the country’s minority Uighur Muslim population, according to 403 pages of internal documents obtained by The New York Times.

As many as a million Uighurs, who primarily inhabit China’s Xinjiang region, have been subjected to Chinese indoctrination camps, which the regime has claimed are merely “vocational training centers” attended voluntarily. The new documents contradict those claims.

“We must be as harsh as them, and show absolutely no mercy,” Xi declared in 2014 remarks, referencing a terrorist attack by Uighur extremists that killed 31 people. He called for marshaling the “organs of dictatorship” and warned against placing “human rights above security.”

“Children saw their parents taken away, students wondered who would pay their tuition and crops could not be planted or harvested for lack of manpower,” the Times reports. “Yet officials were directed to tell people who complained to be grateful for the Communist Party’s help and stay quiet.”

“If they don’t undergo study and training, they’ll never thoroughly and fully understand the dangers of religious extremism,” officials were supposed to tell relatives of those detained, according to the documents. “No matter what age, anyone who has been infected by religious extremism must undergo study.”

One document reveals they were supposed to go so far as to tell the victims’ loved ones to “treasure this chance for free education that the party and government has provided to thoroughly eradicate erroneous thinking, and also learn Chinese and job skills,” which “offers a great foundation for a happy life for your family.”

Remarkably, the leak also reveals that local officials have at points tried to resist the crackdown and been punished (up to imprisonment) for refusing to “round up everyone who should be rounded up,” in the words of one document.

“Why is this not the biggest story in the world now?” asks Rod Dreher at The American Conservative. “Why are the Muslim countries — the Arab ones, as well as Iran, Turkey, Pakistan, Indonesia — so silent about it? No one can plausibly begrudge Beijing its desire to stop Islamic extremism. But the Chinese Communists are eradicating an ancient culture and a religion from the face of the earth in Xinjiang province. And the world just stands by watching, because China is rich and powerful enough to get away with it.”