|What is affected||
|Type of violation||
|Date||01 July 2001|
|Region||A [ Asia ]|
Duty holder(s) /responsible party(ies)
Complaint against the Chinese Government’s Forced Eviction of Ethnic Mongolian Herders
1. Reports on the forced eviction:
According to the Chinese authorities’ official news agency, Xinhua News Agency, at least 200,000 ethnic Mongolian nomadic herders will be forcibly evicted from their native lands in northern China’s Inner Mongolia. For details, see the attached document: China: Inner Mongolia Desertification Leads To Large-scale of Relocation.
According to the same report, at least 7,000 ethnic Mongolian herders had already been evicted from their pasturelands in Inner Mongolia by July 2001. For details, see the attached document: China: Inner Mongolia Desertification Leads To Large-scale of Relocation.
According to another report from the same news agency, at least another 700 ethnic Mongolian herder families have not been resettled after eviction from Sunid Right Wing Banner (“Su Ni Te You Qi” in Chinese) of western Inner Mongolia’s Shiliin Gol League (“Xi Lin Guo Le Meng” in Chinese). For details, see the attached document: Mongolian Herders Going Back To “Otor”
According to the New York Times, at least another 100 displaced ethnic Mongolian families are scheduled to move into a resettlement area on the outskirts of Xilinhot, the regional capital in western Inner Mongolia. For details, see: Chinese Region Felled by Nature’s Blows.
According to Xinhua News Agency, at least 22 banners (a geo-administrative sub-unit of the ‘aimags’ or leagues) and counties have been named experimental units for the government-organized “Enlarging Towns For Immigrants” project. Among the so-called “Environmental Immigrants”, at least 800 individuals representing 200 families are in various stages of eviction to areas near Huhhot City, capital of Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region. For details, see Huhhot City Carrying Out “Immigrant” Projects.
According to the Voice of America, almost 800,000 Mongol and Tibetan herders in western China’s Qing Hai Province will be evicted from their pasture lands. Among those herders, almost 50% are Mongolian herders. For details, see: Nomadic Herders Vanishing In China.
According the Inner Mongolia Online website quoting official news in China, at least 3,000 ethnic Mongolian herders have been evicted from their ancestral lands and forced to change their traditional way of life in southwestern Inner Mongolia’s Otog Banner. For details, see: Gunchirga Village’s Herders Start to Raise Turkeys Instead of Sheep and Cattle.
According to one of China’s most famous official news organs, Guang Ming Daily, until last April, it is estimated that at least 2 million person-crossings have occurred into the Inner Mongolian grasslands from other areas to dig hair-grass, a type of wild grass widely used for food and medicinal products. Because of this indiscriminate digging of the grasslands, 18% of the whole territory of Inner Mongolia has become defoliated and turned to desert. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 内蒙古2 亿多亩草原遭破坏.
According to the Inner Mongolian Daily newspaper, 50% of the territory of Baruun-Ujuur Sume, a region of eastern Inner Mongolia formerly known as Bargu Banner, has been destroyed as a result of the indiscriminate digging up of “Fang-Feng”, a kind of wild grass used for Chinese medicines. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 呼伦贝尔大草原在哭泣.
According to China’s official news, Chi Feng Information Net, eastern Inner Mongolia’s Aohan Banner has sent about 30,000 persons to large cities such as Beijing, Dalian etc as laborers because of the environmental problems in this Banner. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 敖汉旗组织大规模劳务输出.
According to China’s official newspaper, Aa Meng Daily, by August 2000, western Inner Mongolia’s Alashan League had evicted 10,000 herders representing 8,000 families to agricultural areas. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 调整产业结构 优化畜群结构 阿盟决心让草场超载成为历史.
According to China’s official news bureau, Xinhua News, more than 68 herder families have been evicted from their lands near He-Lan-Shan Mountain and resettled in agricultural areas and cities such as Bayanhot City and Usut City etc. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 保护贺兰山.
According to China’s official news, Xinhua News, southwestern Inner Mongolia’s Ikh-Juu League (‘aimag’ in Mongolian, the ‘League’ is the largest geo-administrative unit in the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region) has started an “Environmental Immigration Project” which will be carried out in 8 Banners and counties, 52 sumes (the ‘sume’ is the next smallest geo-political administrative unit after the ‘banners’) and villages, 132 ‘Gachaas’ (the ‘gachaa’ is the smallest geo-administrative unit). It will affect a total of 45,700 people with 5,400 persons to be evicted in the first annual plan. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 伊克昭盟生态移民扶贫工程启动.
According to China’s official news, Xinhua News, western Inner Mongolia’s Bayannuur League has evicted 4,231 people and 2,000 people in 2000 and 2001 respectively from environmentally damaged areas to the so-called “better areas”. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 移民的路子该怎么走？
According to China’s official news, Xinhua Net, until March 2002, at least 40,000 ethnic Mongolian herders in western Inner Mongolia’s Alashan League have been evicted from their pasture lands and resettled in agricultural areas and cities because of the government’s “banning herding” order. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 探访沙尘源：在失守的生态要塞守望绿色(图).
According to China’s official news, Xinhua News, at least 25,000 people in eastern Inner Mongolia’s Jaruud Banner have been relocated as laborers because of environmental problems. For details, see the attached original Chinese report: 扎鲁特旗劳务输出两万多人.
2. Estimated Number of Mongolian Herders Evicted from their Pasturelands
According to the above reports, at least 168,431 people have been evicted under the government’s order in Inner Mongolia. The real number of evicted Mongolian herders is likely to be much larger than the official statistics report. This is because
A. most of the remote area’s evictions are not counted and not available to the news media,
B. most of the small-scale forced evictions are ignored by the news media,
C. because the news media are government organs and under tight control, information about the more egregious cases are censored so many important details and information about the ongoing forced evictions are not reported.
3. Why do we say these forced evictions are targeted to ethnic Mongolians?
A. According to the reports, the areas where forced evictions are being carried out are ethnic Mongolian herders’ pasturelands.
B. The evictions have been restricted to regions where it is known that most of the residents are Mongolians still living as nomadic herders.
C. According to the sources, the main target of the evictions is not the Han Chinese farmers even though their over-cultivation and indiscriminate exploitation of land are the main reasons for the environmental destruction occurring in Inner Mongolia.
D. Using the slogan of “helping to modernize ethnic Mongolian’s backward primitive culture”, the forced eviction of ethnic Mongolians is really intended to complete the Chinese government’s long-term goal of eliminating the ethnic Mongolian population and traditional culture.
4. Why do we consider these evictions as ‘forced’ evictions?
A. According to the Xinhua News report on behalf of Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region’s People’s Government, Mr. Hao Yidong, vice chairman of the autonomous region, made an official announcement on the eviction. For details, see: China: Inner Mongolian Desertification Leads to Large-scale of Relocation;
B. According to the same report, Mr. Hao Yidong also stressed that the herders “have to leave” because “it is the only way to get rid of poverty without harming the environment”. For details, see the attached report: China:Inner Mongolian desertification leads to large-scale of relocation;
C. The lack of a systematic follow-up report on the massive eviction by various authorities points to the desire on the part of the authorities to not draw attention to what is happening. Here are the important facts surrounding the forced evictions :Where the evictees were resettled to and how many were there. The authorities have not accurately reported the total number of the evictees and the places the evictees were sent to. Most of the evictees along with their livestock, were not properly provided for with food, water, housing, shelter and medical services by the government. See the attached pictures with original Chinese report: 风吹草原看不到牛羊. The living conditions, especially the social, cultural and language environment of the places where the evictees have been moved to are not suitable for ethnic Mongolians. Most of them were resettled to agricultural or urban areas with overwhelmingly large Han Chinese populations. For details, see the attached pictures and original Chinese report: 探访沙尘源：在失守的生态要塞守望绿色(图). Most of the evictees have been forced to engage in business and agricultural life-style instead of their traditional nomadic life-style. For details, see the attached documents and pictures: Chinese Region Felled by Nature’s Blows ; Nomadic Herders Vanishing in China; Gunchirga Village’s Herdsmen Started to Raise Turkeys Instead of Sheep and Cattle; 探访沙尘源：在失守的生态要塞守望绿色(图) (with pictures);
5. Our Concerns:
A. Can the Mongolian population (perhaps 15% of the population in the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region) resist the authorities’ ethnic assimilation and population elimination policy after resettlement into an overwhelmingly large Han Chinese population?
B. Can the Mongolians preserve their national identity, traditional way of life, customs and language after they are resettled into Han Chinese agricultural and urban populations?
C. Can the Mongolians enjoy their indigenous and minority rights as well as right to self-determination in an overwhelmingly Han Chinese-dominated society?
D. Can they be treated equally and have access to social, cultural and economic rights? Can they have equal opportunities to obtain housing, medical care, education and employment?
6. Our Demands:
A. Urge the Chinese government to officially admit the facts surrounding the massive forced evictions policy.
B. Urge the Chinese government to end the ongoing massive forced eviction of ethnic Mongolians in Inner Mongolia and elsewhere.
C. Urge the Chinese government to return the ethnic Mongolian evictees to their homelands.
D. Urge the Chinese government to pay proper compensation to the ethnic Mongolian evictees for the massive population displacement and environmental destruction to their grasslands.
E. Urge the Chinese government to provide a systematic and detailed follow-up survey on the forced evictions of ethnic Mongolians with full disclosure.
F. Urge the Chinese government to recognize that the mass population transfer policies of the central government which brought in millions of Han Chinese farmers into Inner Mongolia caused the destruction of the Inner Mongolian ecology and environment through over cultivation and indiscriminate exploitation of the Inner Mongolian grasslands.
G. Urge the Chinese government to release official data on the Han Chinese immigrations and environmental damage since its colonial regime started in 1949.
H. As a remedy at national level, the Chinese government must adopt effective legislation to stop Han Chinese immigration to Inner Mongolia.
I. As a remedy at national level, the Chinese government must relocate the Han Chinese immigrants out of Inner Mongolia to other provinces to end the destruction of the traditional Mongolian society and ecology.
J. As a remedy at international level, the Chinese government must implement the bills and covenants of the United Nations relating to human rights to end the violation and deprivation of ethnic Mongolians’ basic human rights and fundamental freedoms including rights to free association, freedom of speech and press.
7. Conclusion: A Gross Human Rights Violation Against Ethnic Mongolians
A. The entire population of Mongolians in Inner Mongolia (4.5 million) has been affected by this massive forced eviction and at least 150,000 ethnic Mongolian herders’ basic human rights and fundamental freedoms have been seriously violated by the Chinese government.
B. Ethnic Mongolians in Inner Mongolia have lost all kinds of basic human rights, affecting their social, economic and cultural status.
C. These violations have continued since 1949 when the Chinese Communist Party took over the region and have intensified especially during recent years.
D. According to the Chinese official reports, the government is planning larger forced evictions against ethnic Mongolians instead of taking effective domestic remedies.
Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center (SMHRIC)
37-40 79 Street
Jackson Heights NY 11372 USA
Tel & Fax: +1 (718) 899–8391
China: Inner Mongolia desertification leads to large-scale relocation
(AP). As many as 200,000 farmers and herdsmen living in the barren areas of Northern China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region will be relocated. Hao Yidong, vice-chairman of the autonomous region, made the announcement at a working conference held recently in Hohhot, capital of Inner Mongolia. They have to move to other places, said Hao, stressing it is the only way to get rid of poverty without harming the environment. During the past seven years, the living conditions for a total of 2.7 million people in the region have been greatly improved under the assistance of local governments, sources said. However, there are still about 200,000 people living in the region with unsound environments, where drought and desertification have seriously threatened their life. They have to continue exploiting the very limited natural resources in order to make a living, which in turn has further deteriorated the environment there.The programme has received support from a majority of the population and about 7,000 people moved to fertile land and established their new homes last year, officials said. Even if the government does not launch the program, we ourselves will still try to find a better place, Huang Guangyuan, a villager from the county of Duolun, told a reporter. There is nothing else here except sand, he complained, pointing to the house he abandoned, which has been half buried by yellow sand. Located on the verge of a large area of sand-filled land, his village has almost been destroyed by years of rampant sandstorms. Not long ago, Huang, together with another 20 households in his village, moved to their new homes on the outskirts of the town.The government has not only invested in building new houses for the villagers, but also allocated sufficient arable land for them to grow vegetables,according to sources.http://mongolia.panda.org/en/news/?195993/China-Inner-Mongolia-desertification-leads-to-large-scale-relocation