East Turkistan National Awakening Movement

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East Turkistan
National Awakening Movement
FounderSalih Hudayar
FoundedJune 4, 2017; 2 years ago (2017-06-04)
Headquarters1325 G Street NW, Suite 500 Washington, DC 20005
IdeologyUyghur nationalism
Liberal democracy
Political positionCentre-right

The East Turkistan National Awakening Movement [ETNAM] (Uyghur: شەرقىي تۈركىستان مىللىي ئويغۇنۇش ھەرىكىتى) is a Washington D.C. based human rights and political rights' group which declared its existence in June 2017.[1] The group defines itself as a part and subset of the broad National Movement of East Turkistan as a nonviolent international political and human rights organization that seeks to restore the independence of East Turkistan in order to safeguard the freedoms and human rights of East Turkistan’s people. Salih Hudayar, a Uyghur American consultant[2] and graduate student founded the group after pre-existing Uyghur/East Turkistan organizations failed to effectively call for East Turkistan's independence deeming it "controversial".[3]


ETNAM seeks to establish unity, democratic values and compassion amongst the people of East Turkistan in order to restore the state of East Turkistan in accordance with international laws.[4] It strives to promote the national interest and rights of all the peoples of East Turkistan within East Turkistan and internationally.

ETNAM strongly believes that the East Turkistan National Movement is not exclusive to the Uyghurs but all Turkic peoples of East Turkistan including Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Uzbeks, Tatars, and others.[5] The group advocates for the end of China's colonization and occupation of East Turkistan and actively strives to restore the independence of East Turkistan.[6] ETNAM is the first Uyghur organization to not portray the Uyghur and other Turkic peoples of East Turkistan as a persecuted minority, but rather as an occupied state.[7]


Since its founding, ETNAM has organized numerous demonstrations calling for the independence of East Turkistan[8][9] and lobbied members of the US Congress to enact bills to help protect the Uyghur and other Turkic peoples of East Turkistan.[10] On December 20, 2018, in remembrance of the 69th anniversary of East Turkistan's occupation by the People's Republic of China, the group organized a march from the White House[11] to the State Department and called on the US government to "recognize the genocide occurring in East Turkistan" and also called on the United Nations to "act according to the UN Genocide Convention and stop the 21st century Holocaust".[12]

The group has also sent a petition titled 'Condemn China's Concentration Camps and Prevent a 21st Century Holocaust in East Turkistan' to the White House calling on the US government to condemn China's mass incarceration of more than 3 million Uyghur and other Turkic peoples in concentration camps,[13] and asking for the United States to recognize East Turkistan as an occupied territory. The movement's founder Salih Hudayar gave a speech calling on support for restoring East Turkistan's independence at a Committee on the Present Danger: China event on April 9, 2019.[14]

On July 15, 2019, Bill Gertz, the editor for the The Washington Free Beacon reported that researchers with the East Turkistan National Awakening Movement, a relatively new Uyghur independence group, discovered the new camps during a nine-month open source intelligence gathering project that utilized commercial satellite images and reports people in the region.[15] They identified at least 124 Concentration Camps[16], 193 prisons, and 66 bingtuan labor camps along with 37 military facilities in East Turkistan ("Xinjiang").

The group was also the only Uyghur / East Turkistani group to sign onto an open letter authored by retired U.S. Navy Captain James E. Fanell, the former director of intelligence and information operations for the U.S. Pacific Fleet, urging President Donald Trump to "stay the course" and continue his policy of being tough on China.[17] The letter was rebutting a previous letter titled "China is Not the Enemy" written in the Washington Post which urged President Donald J. Trump to cooperate with China.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lepeska, David. "Uighurs accuse Turkey of betrayal, seek new friends". Ahval News. Ahval News. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  2. ^ Luxner, Larry. "Muslim Uyghurs, urging freedom for 'East Turkestan,' picket Chinese Embassy in Washington". The Times of Israel. The Times of Israel. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  3. ^ Shenoy, Rupa. "As families are lost to China's 're-education camps,' US Uighurs are split". PRI's The World. Public Radio International. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  4. ^ "About ETNAM – East Turkistan National Awakening Movement". nationalawakening.org. Retrieved 2018-07-15.
  5. ^ "Amerikida Otkuzuliwatqan 2 Ayliq Namayish Toghrisid Mexsus Sohbet". Uyghur Nida Television and Radio. Uyghur Nida Television and Radio. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  6. ^ Shimron, Yonat. "A young Uighur American cries out for justice". Religion News Service. Religion News Service. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  7. ^ Lepeska, David. "Uighurs accuse Turkey of betrayal, seek new friends". Ahval News. Ahval News. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  8. ^ Pasquini, Elaine. "Rally for Uyghurs Held Outside White House". Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  9. ^ Shafik, Mandai. "Uighurs marking 'independence day' call for international help". Al Jazeera. Al Jazeera. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  10. ^ Essa, Azad. "'If we remain silent, it might get worse': Uighurs fear for loved ones in China". Middle East Eye. Middle East Eye. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  11. ^ "Gallery: The best photos from around the worl". The Sydney Morning Herald. The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  12. ^ "ABD Uygur Türklerini baskı altına alan Çin'e ABD'de protesto". Euro News. Anadolu Agency.
  13. ^ Nelson, Steven (February 3, 2019). "White House petition site relaunches — and then goes dormant". Washington Examiner. Retrieved 1 March 2019.
  14. ^ "Salih Hudayar Speaks at 'Committee on the Present Danger: China' Event". YouTube. Secure Freedom. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  15. ^ Gertz, Bill (15 July 2019). "Network of Chinese Concentration Camps for Uighurs Uncovered". The Washington Free Beacon. Retrieved 1 August 2019.
  16. ^ Lake, Eli (16 July 2019). "China's Campaign Against the Uighurs Demands a Respons". Bloomberg. Bloomberg. Retrieved 1 August 2019.
  17. ^ Fanell, James E. (21 July 2019). "Dear President Trump: Stay the Course on China". American Greatness. Retrieved 1 August 2019.

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