Prisoner of Conscience
Name: Idris Hasan
Chinese name: Yidiresi Aishan
Year of Birth: 1988
Citizenship and Passport: Chinese
Charges: Terrorism charges
International Law Context: Arbitrary detention, violation of international law of non-refoulement and transnational repression by the Chinese State Advocacy for the Rights of Idris Hasan – Prisoner of Conscience
Idris Hasan, also known as Yidiresi Aishan, was arrested on July 19, 2021, at Casablanca Airport, Morocco, due to an Interpol Red Notice. However, Interpol authorities canceled the Red Notice on August 03, 2021. Despite this, a Moroccan court ruled for his extradition to China on December 15, 2021, based on the Sino-Moroccan extradition treaty. Since then, Hasan has been imprisoned in Morocco. The case has gained international attention, with organizations such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and MENA advocating for his rights. It has also been covered extensively by Voice of America, Radio Free Asia, and various other media outlets and human rights and legal organizations.
In 2008, when Hasan was 20 years old and studying at the Chinese Petroleum University in mainland China, he and three of his friends were arrested and subjected to torture. Despite being Chinese citizens, their Uyghur identity made them appear suspicious outside of Xinjiang. After his release, Hasan’s interactions with Radio Free Asia led to continuous police interrogations within China. In 2012, Hasan decided to escape China with his wife.
Upon arriving in Turkey, Hasan used his graphic design skills to assist Uyghur rights groups. In 2021, he discovered his name on a Turkish government document regarding China’s wanted Uyghurs in Turkey, which led him to leave the country. However, he was arrested while he landed at Casablanca airport in Morocco on July 19, 2021 due to an Interpol Red Notice, potentially indicating cooperation between Interpol and the Chinese government.
The cancellation of the Red Notice by Interpol on August 03 brought some relief, but the Moroccan Court ruled for Hasan’s extradition to China on December 15. This ruling, despite the existence of an extradition treaty, violates international law. U.N. human rights experts have urged Morocco to halt the extradition, emphasizing the principle of non-refoulement.
Human rights organizations are calling on the Moroccan government to intervene. Carolyn Nash, Amnesty International USA’s Asia advocacy director, has urged Moroccan Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch to halt Idris Hasan’s extradition. Mary Lawlor, the U.N. special rapporteur on human rights defenders, has emphasized that Hasan should not be put in danger by being extradited to China.
Bibliography and Resources
- Radio Free Asia: https://www.rfa.org/english/news/uyghur/idris-hasan-12162021175312.html
- Amnesty Report: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2021/09/morocco-detained-uyghur-must-not-be-transferred-to-china/
- Wife’s interview VOA: https://www.voanews.com/a/uyghur-man-s-long-journey-to-freedom-may-end-with-return-to-china/6395787.html
- Human Rights Watch Report: https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/07/19/morocco-uyghur-activist-risk-extradition
- MENA Rights Group Report and Timeline of the case
- Demonstration in DC: https://www.uyghuraa.org/events/demonstration-at-moroccan-embassy
- Interpol canceled the Red Notice: https://www.grossmanyoung.com/interpol-blog/red-notice-yidiresi-aishan/