US considering ban on cotton from Xinjiang region of China over rights concerns

Reuters September 8 | Updated on September 08, 2020

The potential ban comes amid reports of use of forced labour on minority Muslims, says New York Times

The administration of US President Donald Trump is weighing a ban on some or all products made with cotton from the Xinjiang region of China over alleged human rights violations, the New York Times reported late on Monday.

The potential ban, which could be announced as soon as Tuesday, comes amid reports of use of forced labour on minority Muslims in Xinjiang, the report said.

The scope of the order is unclear, the Times reported, including whether it would include products containing cotton from Xinjiang that are shipped from other countries. But the region is used by major global clothing brands as a source of cotton and other textiles.

The measure, called a withhold release order, would be issued by US Customs and Border Protection. The White House and the Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

US lawmakers had proposed a legislation in March aimed at preventing goods made from forced labour in Xinjiang region from reaching the United States.

Xinjiang, a major cotton-producing region, is an autonomous territory in northwest China that is home to the Muslim minority Uighurs.

Published on September 08, 2020

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