Did a Chinese army officer thrash a Muslim Uyghur for owning the Quran?

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A video displaying a semi-naked man getting thrashed by another man in a uniform has recently been doing rounds all over social media, especially on twitter. There are allegations that the video exposes a Chinese army officer inflicting atrocities on an Uyghur Muslim man on grounds of possessing a Quran.

Background: On 31st December, a Twitter user by the name of Rabia Azhar tweeted the video along with the caption- ‘This is a Chinese officer beating a Muslim Uyghur for having a copy of the Quran in his house! Everyone send this out so the world knows what is happening in East Turkistan. China is killing all Muslims. Please Retweet to expose Chinese terrorism against innocent Muslims.’ This tweet kick-started a chain reaction, with dozens of social media users sharing the video on Facebook, twitter and Instagram with similar captions. Some have alleged that the man on the receiving end of the violence is a Chinese resident of Pakistani ethnicity and have gone to the extent of saying that India should learn to get rid of Jihadists from China.

The Truth

Mr. Lijian Zhao, Deputy Chief of Mission at the Chinese Embassy rebuffed Rabia Azhar’s narrative with the following tweet

July 2017



The viral video of a ‘Chinese military officer beating up a Muslim Uyghur’ has resurfaced on social media recently. The original video was released two years ago by a certain ‘Mugur Octavian Timariu’ on the website LiveLeak. The man in the uniform belongs to the Indonesian military while the man getting thrashed is possibly a petty thief. The video was also shared by a YouTube account called ‘master show projek’ on July 10th, 2017 with the title- ‘Thieves caught by members of the TNI??’ The video thus, is legitimate but it is being wrongly contextualized to give momentum to propaganda. While the events in the video did indeed occur, they certainly do not give evidence to a Muslim being oppressed at the hands of a Chinese officer. As rightly pointed out by Mr. Lijian Zhao, the man on receiving end of the beating clearly does not scream in Chinese and the uniform of the officer does not resemble that of the Chinese military.

To conclude, the video does not constitute as proof of a Muslim being oppressed at the hands of the Chinese army in the Xinjiang province of China, but is a hoax made up to suit a political agenda.

More Fakes

On January 2nd, 2018 a Facebook user by the name of Amreen Khan shared the same video with the caption- ‘This is what’s going on in China right now! I don’t see much of this being highlighted in the news. Surely Facebook censors such news!’


On Twitter, this message spread like wildfire- ‘भारत सरकार कब सीख लेगी चीन से……पता नहीं चीन में इस पाकिस्तानी मुस्लिम व्यक्ति की निर्ममता से पिटाई । जानते हो क्यों? इसके पास आसमानी किताब पायी गई। उखाड़ लो जिहादियों चीन का एक J…… का बाल.’



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Amruta Khandekar

I am a 21 year old pursuing a Master of Arts in Journalism degree from Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication, Pune. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree from St.Xavier's college in Mumbai. I'm a history buff with a special fondness for politics, arts and culture and human interest stories.