The ruling Communist Party in China has heavily down on brands after the United States, the European Union, Britain and Canada imposed travel and financial sanctions on officials accused of abuses in Xinjiang in China’s northwest. In recent developments China lashed out at H&M, Nike and among other brands over its policies in its Xinjiang region.
Amid a huge backlash in China against Western fashion brands including Adidas, Nike and other clothing brands over Xinjiang cotton row, Chinese TV stations have found a new way to show support for the controversial way to produce cotton – blurring out Western brand logos in their programmes and various shows and censoring everything from T-shirts to shoes. Facing its latest wrath the Swedish multinational clothing-retail brand H&M has agreed to change a “problematic map” online following Chinese government criticism and backlash.
Reports of arbitrary detention, ill-treatment, sexual violence and forced labor in Xinjiang have been coming out to public knowledge which calls for a necessitated thorough and independent assessment. However earlier too H&M was heavily put down upon by China’s Youth League when the clothing giant claimed in March 2020 it would no longer buy cotton from Xinjiang. Similarly the various stances of Western fashion retailers over human rights abuses in Xinjiang triggered massive outrage on social media. Prominent Chinese celebrities jumped on the bandwagon and severed ties with several Western brands to express support for Xinjiang cotton.
Earlier US has banned cotton imports from an influential Chinese producer citing that it says uses the forced labour of detained Uyghur Muslims. Foreign researchers and governments say more than 1 million people from predominantly Muslim ethnic minorities are held in detention camps there. According to the U.S.-based Human Rights Watch (HRW), the government used an expansive data collection project to arbitrarily detain Uighurs in the region. United Nations experts and advocates say at least 1 million ethnic Uighurs, who are mostly Muslim and speak a Turkic language, have been detained at some point in Xinjiang internment camps.
China has stoop down this low several times using its great expansionist influence and huge market shares and resources and often lashed out at international firms who refused to carry out the Chinese narratives and claims. Bowing to such pressures and left with no choice China, often bullies such brands which makes it more than crucial for the International community about an alternative world’s shift of order and possible solutions to check and balance China’s ever increasing economic and expansionist prowess.