China: Xinjiang's Uyghur population shows growth

The Chinese government has released a report claiming to show a growing Uyghur population in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The government on Sunday issued a white paper on Xinjiang's demographic development which it says is based on a once-in-a-decade census held last year.

The document says the region's total population stood at 25.85 million, with Uyghurs making up 45 percent, or 11.62 million.

That represents an increase of 1.62 million in the Uyghur population from the previous census conducted in 2010.

The white paper says the Uyghur population has maintained a relatively high growth rate since the foundation of the People's Republic of China.
The document emphasized that Xinjiang's demographic development marks the success of a unified multi-ethnic country in ensuring the healthy population growth of its ethnic minorities.

The white paper also apparently refers to accusations from Western and other countries that Beijing has been conducting genocide in Xinjiang.

The document says anti-China forces have fabricated stories of genocide in Xinjiang to deceive the international community and impede China's development and progress, but says these malicious efforts will not succeed.

The Chinese government is believed to be seeking to prevent a rise in international criticism of its actions in Xinjiang ahead of the Beijing Olympics in February.