GOP White House hopeful Francis Suarez made a major snub Tuesday by admitting he had no knowledge of China’s human rights abuses against Muslims.
Radio host Hugh Hewitt has asked Miami Mayor Suarez if he plans to improve the situation of the Uyghurs, a Muslim minority from northern China who have been put in prison camps by the Chinese Communist Party.
“What is a Uyghur?” Suarez asked the shocked conservative to speak to the leader present.
Hewitt then fired another shot at the mayor, “You’ve got to be smart.”
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez appeared confused after being asked about China’s human rights case
He had to be corrected by host Hugh Hewitt, leading to an ugly on-air exchange.
Suarez then strangely mentioned that Hewitt had given him “homework” to define exactly what a Uyghur was.
“I’ll see what it was, what did you call it Uighur,” he mentioned.
‘Uighurs. You actually need to know more about the Uyghurs, Mr. Mayor,” Hewitt told Suarez. “You have to talk about it every day, okay?
Suarez later claimed on Twitter that he had misunderstood Hewitt’s correct pronunciation of the Muslim minority.
UN researchers interviewed former inmates of Uyghur camps Beijing calls “de-radicalization centers”
The United Nations last August accused China of “serious human rights violations” and alleged crimes against humanity in Xinjiang.
The 48-page report, based mostly on interviews with former prisoners, said Beijing repeatedly singled out Uyghurs and various minorities between 2017 and 2019.
It found “patterns of torture” in the camps and cited “credible” allegations of torture or ill-treatment, as well as cases of sexual abuse.
UN investigators cited the “arbitrary and discriminatory detention” of such groups as a possible violation of international law.
Human rights groups believe that more than one million Uyghurs and various ethnic minorities are held in the notorious camps.
China denies the claims, insisting the camps are “training facilities” for de-radicalisation.
Saying goodbye to the CCP before leaving office, the Trump administration decided to label the abuses as “genocide.”
This prompted an outcry from the Chinese embassy in Washington, known as the claim “a farce used to discredit China”.
Officials dismissed the US claim as “gross interference in China’s internal affairs”.
Suarez’s presidential rival, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, rebuked Beijing earlier on Tuesday at an international speech in Washington, DC.
Nikki Haley slammed China for its human rights record in a speech to the center-right party in Washington on Tuesday
“I mean, genocide — we promised never to turn away from genocide, and it’s happening in China right now,” Haley replied. “And no one is saying anything because they are too afraid of China.”
It follows last week Joe Biden calling Chinese leader Xi a “dictator” while former President Donald Trump said he “stood up to China like no government has ever done before.”
Earlier this month, Suarez launched a lengthy presidential marketing campaign on the rapidly growing GOP theme.
He was first elected mayor of Miami in 2017, then he was re-elected in 2021.