In today’s Global Times is this tiny tidbit from Xinhua. What I’m quoting here is the entire story as the GT printed it:
The government of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region has promised to find and take home native Xinjiang street children, many of whom have to make a living by begging or stealing.
At least 90 percent of the children are kidnap victims, most come from less developed areas in southern Xinjiang, according to a report by the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences. (Xinhua)
This flies in the face of a lot of the reasoning that was thrown around earlier this year to take down the “Rescue Street Children” campaign on Sina Weibo and elsewhere (see this previous post on for more on that). Moreover, it very much confirms what we’re being told by some of the people we’ve spoken to for our documentary, who have said that nearly 100% of the Uyghur children they rescue from street life (begging and pickpocketing, mostly) have been kidnapped.
Luckily, since the demise of the “Rescue Street Children” movement, Sina’s users have kept active in the social sphere, and are currently waging a campaign to rescue whiny, lame college kids from being single.
Of course, it’s not a surprise that the chief thing most people had against the “Rescue Street Children” is a total lie. I’m a bit surprised they’re reporting it in the media, although of course this report sort of makes it sound like the problem is only in Xinjiang — it isn’t, the kids are taken from there to cities all over the country — and it is a two-sentence wire story they’re running on a Saturday…clearly someone’s hoping it stays low-profile.
Note: If anyone can find the original Xinhua report, I’d love to see it. There’s this story about how Xinjiang is working to rescue street kids, but it doesn’t contain the numbers in the GT article…