China has allegedly detained dozens of Muslim women in Xinjiang region who are married to men in Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B), according to Voice of America.
The issue was addressed in a unanimously passed resolution of the legislative assembly of G-B, lawmakers said on Sunday.
The resolution demands the federal government take urgent steps to secure the release of more than 50 Chinese wives, who it says were taken into custody last year while they were visiting relatives in their native towns in Xinjiang.
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The deputy speaker of the assembly was quoted as saying the women were rounded up during a Chinese anti-terrorism crackdown in Xinjiang.
The detainees are married to G-B men who are mostly associated with trading activity through the Khunjerab Pass, the only land route linking Pakistan and China, about 4,500 metres above sea level.
Regional lawmakers insisted the history of intermarriages between G-B and Xinjiang is decades old, and both the border regions share deep cultural ties. They asserted the detained Chinese women were innocent and had no links to any radical elements.
Pakistan’s development by-product of China’s global integration
Chinese and Pakistani federal officials have not immediately offered any reaction to the allegations leveled in the resolution.
Chinese officials accuse the outlawed East Turkestan Islamic Movement, or ETIM, of plotting terrorist attacks in and beyond the province.
The separatist group was founded by militant Uighurs apparently in response to alleged government restrictions on religious and cultural expression, charges Beijing denies as baseless.
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The Gilgit-Baltistan region is the gateway to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
The project is a combination of building roads, rails, economic free zones and power plants in the country with an estimated $62 billion Chinese investment. Thousands of Chinese are currently in Pakistan, working on CPEC-related projects.
The corridor aims to link the Arabian Sea to Xinjiang through Khunjerab Pass, giving Beijing a secure and shortest trade access to international markets.
This article originally appeared on Voice of America News