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Rights group files complaint against German retailers

Sep 09, 2021
Rights group files complaint against German retailers

Berlin, Germany

A human rights group filed a complaint to German prosecutors alleging that several fashion retailers profited from forced labour in China's Xinjiang region.

The Berlin-based European Centre for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR) accuses Lidl, Hugo Boss (BOSSn.DE) and other retailers of abetting and profiting directly or indirectly from forced labour in Xinjiang's cotton industry, according to a 96-page complaint received by prosecutors in the Karlsruhe federal court.

China denies Western countries' accusations that it mistreats minority Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, or that forced labour is carried out there.

The United Nations cites what it says are credible reports that 1 million Muslims held in camps have been put to work in Xinjiang. China initially denied the camps existed, but has since said they are vocational centres designed to combat extremism. In late 2019, China said all people in the camps had "graduated".

Several Western brands including H&M (HMb.ST), Burberry (BRBY.L) and Nike (NKE.N) have been hit by consumer boycotts in China after raising concerns about suspected forced labour in Xinjiang. China holds roughly 20% of the world's cotton market and 85% of its cotton comes from Xinjiang.

Source: Reuters

Image Source: Google Images

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