China's Xinjiang crackdown reaps millions in assets for the state

Chinese authorities have seized and sold at auction tens of millions of dollars in assets owned by jailed Uyghur business owners amid a broad government campaign to assimilate ethnic minorities in the country’s northwest Xinjiang region.

Since 2019, Xinjiang courts have put at least 150 assets—ranging from home appliances to real estate and company shares—belonging to at least 21 people and valued at a total $84.8 million up for auction on e-commerce sites.

The listings were compiled by the Uyghur Human Rights Project, an advocacy group partially funded by the U.S. government, and were corroborated by The Wall Street Journal, which reviewed court documents and corporate records. The Xinjiang government didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The Uyghur group said it recorded seizures that were clearly linked to court cases involving charges related to terrorism and extremism. It also included cases of people identified by Chinese state media as extremists, or whose families reported they had been accused of such activities.