Dolkun Isa

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Dolkun Isa
Nationality German
Occupation Uyghur activism

Dolkun Isa is an Uyghur democracy activist from the region of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region under the occupation of China, also known as East Turkestan. He has spoken on behalf of the rights of the largely Islamic minority which makes up the majority population in that region. The governments of China has claimed that his "activities" amount to "terrorism". He is currently the World Uyghur Congress secretary.

Flee China[edit]

After enduring persecution from the Chinese government, Isa fled China in 1997 and sought asylum in Europe, and became a citizen of Germany in 2006.[1][2]

East Turkestan Independence Movement[edit]

China's government claims Isa is the vice chairman of the East Turkestan Liberation Organization, however, this is denied by Isa. This claim by China has led to China's issuance of a red notice to Interpol, but this has not been acted on by Germany or any other country in the West where he has since travelled.[3] He has been on a Chinese list of wanted terrorists since 2003.[4] Contrary to China's claims, Isa has condemned all terrorist activities.[5]

Olympic Boycott[edit]

Isa called for a boycott of the 2008 Summer Olympics which were held in Beijing due to the cultural genocide that was being conducted against the people of East Turkestan and Tibet.[6]

2006 Taiwan Controversy[edit]

Isa was admitted to Taiwan in 2006 to attend the meeting of the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization, a movement co-founded by Taiwan in 1991, during the administration of pro-localization president Chen Shui-bian. There were reports in Taiwan's media in July 2009 that Isa had secretly entered the country in the lead-up to the World Games which were hosted in the southern city of Kaohsiung. This prompted the National Immigration Agency of the then China-friendly KMT government to issue a ban on his travel to Taiwan.[7] Rebiya Kadeer was denied a visa to visit Taiwan later in 2009, a move linked to Isa's alleged connections with terrorists. Premier Wu Den-yih noted that if Isa steps down from his position in the World Uyghur Congress or if Kadeer steps down from her position, the ban would be lifted.[8]

2009 South Korea entry denial[edit]

Isa was denied entry into the Republic of Korea and was briefly "detained" in September, 2009 while preparing to attend the World Forum for Democratization in Asia.[9][10] The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization condemned the detention and warned the Korean government in a letter that China's accusations are groundless and that extradition would certainly result in summary trial and execution at the hands of China's authorities.[11] After being held for two days, Isa was released without being admitted to the country, a move that was condemned by Amnesty International.[12]

2016 Visit to India[edit]

On April 22, 2016 it was widely reported that India had issued a visitors visa to Isa to attend a conference in Dharamsala, drawing the "ire" of China.[13] This was viewed as a hardening of India's stand against China since the Uyghur activist Rebiya Kadeer had previously been denied a visa to visit India. This move by the Indian Government was widely seen by Indian News Media[clarification needed] as an act of payback against China for its stand on not supporting JeM Chief Masood Azhar's designation[14] as a terrorist in the UNSC.[15] The Indian government in a U-turn from its earlier stance, later withdrew Isa's visa on 25 April 2016, a day after China raised objections to India [16]


  1. ^ "East Turkestan: Dolkun Isa Detained in South Korea". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  2. ^ "Dolkun Isa, Secretary General of World Uighur Congress denied entry to South Korea". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  3. ^ "Why did the NIA bar Dolkun Isa?". Retrieved 2 October 2009. [dead link]
  4. ^ "South Korean detention of Uyghur activist Dolkun Isa raises concern over Chinese influence on peaceful Uyghur activities". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  5. ^ "STATEMENT OF MR: DOLKUN ISA". Archived from the original on 14 October 2007. Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  6. ^ "Chinese Uighur exile urges Olympic boycott over 'genocide'". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  7. ^ "Why did the NIA bar Dolkun Isa?". Retrieved 2 October 2009. [dead link]
  8. ^ "Wu explains Kadeer 'ban'". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  9. ^ "Response to Dolkun Isa's Arrest in South Korea". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  10. ^ "South Korea holding Uighur activist at airport". Retrieved 2 October 2007. 
  11. ^ "Dolkun Isa: UNPO Issues Letter to MEPs". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  12. ^ "South Korea: Dolkun Isa release welcome but authorities should not have denied him entry". Retrieved 2 October 2009. 
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ Roy, Shubhajit (23 April 2016). "China's Masood Azhar snub: India issues visa to rebel Uyghur leader on Beijing blacklist". The Indian Express. Retrieved 23 April 2016. 
  16. ^