Prisoner of Conscience: Huseyin Celil
Our prisoner of conscience is human rights activist Huseyin Celil. He is a Canadian citizen and ethnic Uighur originally from the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China.
In March 2006, he was arrested while visiting family in Uzbekistan and then unlawfully transferred to China where he received an unfair trial. He was originally given a life sentence for his activities in support of the rights of the Uighur people. In February 2016, his life sentence was commuted; the length of his reduced sentence is still to be confirmed but is expected to be between 19.5 and 20 years.
From the Globe and Mail on August 15, 2014: In remote Xinjiang province, Uighurs are under siege.
From the Globe and Mail on February 3, 2016: China reduces sentence for Canadian long imprisoned on terror charges.