Press release, 26.11.2019

The FDFA is greatly concerned about the revelations in the documents published in the last few days about the internment of Uighurs and other ethnic minorities in Xinjiang. It calls on the Chinese government to address the concerns raised by many states and to allow the UN unhindered access to the region.

The FDFA has been monitoring the human rights situation in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region for some time. Ensuring compliance with the rights of minorities and freedom of opinion, the press and religion are a priority of Switzerland's human rights policy in China.

During the strategic dialogue between Switzerland and China on 22 October 2019, Federal Councillor and head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs Ignazio Cassis expressed his concern about the situation in Xinjiang. Since 1991, Switzerland and China have conducted a regular human rights dialogue which addresses, among other issues, the rights of ethnic and religious minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet.

Switzerland works in various multilateral forums to ensure compliance with human rights. During the UN Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review of China on 6 November 2018, Switzerland called on China to close down its detention camps in Xinjiang. Switzerland also called on China to grant the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights unrestricted access to Xinjiang and to allow an independent UN investigation of the detention camps.

Further information:

Press release FDFA, October 22, 2019

Address for enquiries:

FDFA Information
Federal Palace West Wing
CH-3003 Bern, Switzerland
Tel.: +41 58 462 31 53
Twitter: @SwissMFA


Federal Department of Foreign Affairs

Last update 13.01.2023

  • FDFA Communication answers media queries Mondays to Fridays during office hours and operates a weekend emergency on-call service.


FDFA Communication

Federal Palace West
3003 Bern

Phone (for journalists only):
+41 58 460 55 55

Phone (for all other requests):
+41 58 462 31 53

Start of page