Very interesting article by Business Insider, titled “Anti-China sentiment is suddenly sweeping over Turkey”, July 2015. The article refers to the attacks that take place in Turkey against Chinese tourists and Chinese businesses, in retaliation to the mistreatment of the Uyghur population of China’s Xinjiang province by the Chinese government. For Xinjiang see following map.
The Uyghours are Muslims and constitute approximately 50% of the Xinjiang population. The Sunni Islamists of the terrorist organization of “East Turkestan Islamic Movement” operate in Xinjiang. One could assume that the Islamists of Xinjiang are supported by the Turks, the Arabs and the Persians (Iranians). The Xinjiang province is of great geopolitical importance for China, because the pipelines that carry Kazakhstan’s oil and Turkmenistan’s natural gas to China cross Xinjiang. Moreover the extension of the new Iran-Pakistan pipeline which is promoted by China and Iran will have to cross Xinjiang too. Finally one of the two pipelines that were agreed between Russia and China, the Altai pipeline, will cross Xinjiang too. See map 2.
Therefore it is very natural for the Arabs, the Turks and the Iranians, but also for the Americans, to be interested in the Uyghours. The Arabs and the Iranians care about the Uyghours because they can use them to remind China that she should not forget them when she buys oil and natural gas, but also in order to cause problems to the Russian pipeline. The Turks care about the Uyghours because they can use them to ask China for favors, in exchange for using their influence over the Islamists in Xinjiang. China is one of the largest global investors, and Turkey definitely craves for Chinese investments. Finally the Americans care about the Uyghours because they could be used against China in a potential war between the US and China.
For the article see: