It issued a long line of recommendations to Beijing, including to "immediately cease any discriminatory practices against the Uyghur population and any other ethnic minority groups, including internment or imprisonment on ethnic and religious grounds for (a) de-radicalisation purpose".

It urged Beijing to accept an ILO technical advisory mission and asked it to provide a report by 1 September with information on how it is applying the labour convention against discrimination in employment.

China reacted angrily to the findings, with government representative Qian Xiaoyan insisting that ILO committees should not be used as a "political instrument of some Western countries to smear and denigrate China".

The committee review came after a group of 20 UN labour experts in February voiced their "deep concern" after evaluating the treatment of ethnic and religious minorities in China.

They had assessed allegations by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) in late 2020 that Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in Xinjiang were systematically being used for forced labour in agriculture.

Rights groups also say at least one million Uyghurs have been incarcerated in "re-education camps" in the western region.

Beijing flatly denies all such charges, and maintains the camps are vocational training centres aimed at reducing the appeal of Islamic extremism.

Since China has not completed its ratification of conventions against forced labour, the committee review focused only on the country's adherence to Convention 111 against discrimination in employment, to which it is party.

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