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Separatism in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of People’s Republic of China is a very complex, multifaceted, multidimensional, multifactorial and, at the same time, little-studied problem. This article is devoted to the consideration of the religious factor as one of the factors along with a number of others provoking political instability in the Xinjiang. Given the heterogeneity of Xinjiang, an analysis was conducted of the various zones in the region, which have their own specific characteristics. So, the author came to the conclusion that it is the religious factor that is most pronounced in the Western and Southern zones. Radically-minded separatists, who use elements of the Wahhabi ideology in their political programs, have a fairly serious weight here. And the speeches in these parts of Xinjiang come from the Ferghana Valley. And in this region, anti-Chinese actions, unlike the population of Urumqi and Kuldja, often occur with the slogans of Islamic liberation. Regarding the political and legal situation of Muslims in Xinjiang, although freedom of religion is guaranteed at the official level, in practice, such legislative acts define narrow legal boundaries for religious activities, and they allow state bodies to strictly control and interfere in the sphere of religious relations. Nevertheless, there are not any additional requirements for professing Islam, the state also pays enough attention to the protection of Muslim cultural monuments, which are in large numbers in the Xinjiang.

About the authors

Anna Sergeevna Mavlonova

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Author for correspondence.

PhD, senior lecturer of National Research University Higher School of Economics

Myasnitskaya str., 20, Moscow, Russia, 101000


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Copyright (c) 2018 Mavlonova A.S.

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