Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Is the road, border or area open and accessible to foreigners? Is there danger?
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bwv812
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby bwv812 » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:46 am

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/a ... hinese-re/

Interesting quote:
“It also provides circumstantial evidence that supports estimates of around 10 per cent of the Uyghur population being interned in these camps. Seeing the physical form of the camps has the effect of making them undeniable as an existential fact.”
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bwv812
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby bwv812 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:38 am

A United Nations human rights panel said on Friday that it had received many credible reports that 1 million ethnic Uighurs in China are held in what resembles a “massive internment camp that is shrouded in secrecy.”


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-chin ... SKBN1KV1SU
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sebhoff
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby sebhoff » Wed Aug 15, 2018 5:39 am

I've been reading these posts and the Caravanistan page on Xinjiang with great interest. At some stage, we are planning to travel through the area on our way to Singapore. There's something that has caught my attention on https://caravanistan.com/east-turkestan, though:
If you have a Chinese wife, husband or child, it’s better if you stay out of Xinjiang altogether: you and your family (including minors) may find yourselves spending your nights interrogated by secret police in a highly unpleasant fashion.

My wife is ethnically Chinese (she's from Malaysia), but she's never been to China (and she can't read or write Chinese, just speak some fairly basic Cantonese). Does anybody have any experience with this kind of "combo"?
Sebastian
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steven
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby steven » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:43 am

Hi Sebastian,

I think this will be ok. The report I got came from a foreigner who lives in China for a long time with a Chinese wife and children. This was clearly an issue. Since you are both foreigners, it will be less of an issue, I think. But still, expect questioning. A lot of questioning. 2 hours a day seems average.

Let us know how it was. It might be unpleasant, but I can't see them throwing you in jail, so it'll turn out all right even if with some hassle.
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby loop_1 » Mon Sep 03, 2018 12:01 pm

Does anyone have recent experience of traveling in Xinjiang with stamps and visas from Muslim countries in your passport?

My wife and I are planning to cross into Xinjiang from Kazakhstan in late September 2018. I have stamps from Iran, Iraq, Bosnia, and Turkey. We will both have unused Iranian visas for a later stage of our trip.
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby Antonio » Tue Sep 04, 2018 10:37 am

I was there last August. Recieved the Chinese visa in my country without mentioning that I was going to visit the region. I had Turkish stamps and that was no problem.

If I was a concertina wire manufacturer, the region would be paradise, but being a regular tourist, I cannot say I liked it. For a Silk Road traveller, I would advise just to speed-run it.

I only slept there 3 nights. 2 in Urumqi and 1 in Turfan. First day in Urumqi I was half sick, and just wondered around the hotel. The second day in Urumqi was also wasted since the city is ugly as hell. Jiaohe in Turfan was lovely, and I really enjoyed visiting the ruins, but way too many tour groups for my taste.

You will be asked your passport many times, and they might even photograph you at the train stations. In my experience, the policemen are nice and polite. They asked no questions. Just bear with it. Inmigration control was also very smooth. No phone or bag check.

There are wonders to the East, just go there. Get the train to LIuyuan, and then the minibus to Dunhuang. Much nicer and relaxed than Northern Xinjiang.
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby CortoSinese » Thu Sep 06, 2018 10:44 am

What about carrying Lonely Planet book(s)?

At first, I was slightly worried about having it in my backpack, but after visiting China multiple times, it appeared rather amusing to me that Lonely Planet warns their readers about carrying their "China" book throught the border. All because Taiwan is not printed on their map as a part of PRC. I understant that this is an issue that may cause a stir among the more ardent Chinese "patriots", but hey, it's just a book, and - well - private property, how could they take it away or refuse entry because of it? Years passed and nothing happened. I forgot about the problem ...until now. I am planning to crosss through Xinjiang this time. I am reading all these things you write here and I can't believe how scary the situation has become. I am very attached to my old LP copy. To me, it's more a notebook than a guidebook (the value of which is, sadly, doubtful) - I covered all pages with handwritten notes, filled maps with doodle, practically all blank space is used and heavy with ink and pencil. No material object is dearest to me. I'd rather decide not to visit the "Orwellian dystopia" than lose it.

If you have ANY experience or knowledge of books' "treatment" on Kazakh/Dzungaria border, please please please let me know.*

*Any book, notebook, etc (I won't forget being interrogated by Israeli border control because they found few lines written in Arabic in my notebook)
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CortoSinese
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby CortoSinese » Thu Sep 06, 2018 10:29 pm

Another crucial question: couchsurfing. How about couchsurfing in Xinjiang these days?
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby BakuBound » Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:26 am

If you don't stay in a hotel, you must head to the PSB and register, usually with the owner of the place in tow. (This is true everywhere in China.) Beyond question you'll have a problem if the host is not Han Chinese.

Given the security situation, I would avoid any contact with the PSB. So strongly advise staying in a hotel. But you probably won't find a cheap one that'll take you.
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Re: Security situation in Xinjiang - leave your thoughts

Postby loop_1 » Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:55 pm

How about Airbnb? I see lots of listings for Kashgar but I wonder if they’ll take foreigners. I’m planning to go there with my wife in the first days of October.
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