Chinese people in Turkey

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Chinese people in Turkey
Regions with significant populations
Chinese · Turkish  · Uyghur

There is a small community of Chinese people in Turkey, mostly temporary expatriates. A few hundred Chinese students are enrolled in various Turkish universities.[1] Turkey has a sizeable number of Muslim Uyghur people who hail from the Xinjiang region of China. They have come in large numbers since the early 1950s from the northwestern provinces of China, and as part of their migration to the Middle East, many chose to settle down in urban centres of Turkey. Today, they have effectively associated themselves with the local economy and can be seen practicing in various forms of trade.[2]

The living conditions of the Turkic Uyghurs in China has often been a source of contention between the two countries, with Turkey protesting the treatment the Chinese mete out to Uyghurs. Many Uyghur activists in Turkey are members of secessionist groups such as Home of the Youth, which advocate the independence of a Turkestan republic carved from the current Uyghur homeland of Xinjiang, PRC. These groups have reportedly engaged in various attacks against Chinese nationals and interests based in Turkey. In 2005, China voiced concerns over such organisations, stating explicitly that Turkey should contain any separatist activities which posed a threat to China and that Turkish security agencies had to better protect the life and property of Chinese citizens in Turkey.[3] In 2009, the Chinese Foreign Ministry warned its citizens in Turkey "to remain vigilant and ... avoid crowded or sensitive places" after a series of threats were made on Chinese people and facilities.[4]

Several people of Chinese origin have moved to Turkey in order to further their table tennis careers, and compete internationally for Turkey, including Melek Hu, Cem Zeng and Bora Vang.[5]