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Demographic Situation in Xinjiang-Uigur Autonomous Area in the Last Quarter of the Twentieth Century

Abstract

The article examines the changes in the demographic situation in Xinjiang-Uigur Autonomous (XUAA) area of China in 1980-90-ies and analyzes the demographic factors of the development of national minorities living in the region and the national policy of China. The priority is given to the policies and activities of the Central Government of China aimed to the control and regulation of demographic evolution of the region. Xinjiang is the largest national autonomous area of China where ethnic minorities account for about 20 million people, most of whom are represented by the Uighur ethnic group. Uighurs are an original Turkic-speaking people, which traditionally tends to national and political independence. Sunni Islam had had a great influence on the development of the ethnic group for a long time. Accordingly, the religion has influenced and influences the demographic situation in the region. A peculiarity of Uighur families is their focus on having many children as children are seen as the will and mercy of Allah. However, such position meets opposition from the central government of China, which seeks to limit the birth rate. Even some of the benefits towards the Uighur population, which allow them to have two, and in some cases, three children, do not solve the problem of national discontent. Due to various reasons, including the population policy, Xinjiang remains the most explosive region of China. The demographic situation in XUAA in the context of historical development is considered to be one of the key factors in the growth of Uighur separatism.

Buyarov DV, Kireev AA and Druzyaka AV

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