The air is infused with a fruity fragrance and carts on every corner are dyed with the rich color palette of peppers, grapes and watermelons. This is summer in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
In this place of "forced labor" as described by anti-China politicians and media in the United States, songs hitting all the ethnic notes—as the region is home to all of China's 56 ethnic groups—can be often heard in the streets, and residents can be seen dancing in the squares.
After eradicating absolute poverty in late 2020, Xinjiang, together with the rest of the country, embarked on a new journey of rural revitalization. It has introduced a package of policies to consolidate the achievements of poverty alleviation and boost rural development. Firmly focused on ecological conservation and green development, the autonomous region has been accelerating its formation of a modern industrial system, promoting the in-depth integration of culture and tourism industries and continuing to improve its people's wellbeing. Xinjiang's rural areas are currently the setting of great socioeconomic change, and new strides have been made in employment, education, healthcare and social security. Xinjiang has never been more prosperous than it is now.
This newfound prosperity has benefited from counterterrorism and deradicalization measures. Upholding the principle of fighting and preventing terrorism at the same time, the region has made no compromise on radicalized crime, all the while addressing the roots of the problem. It has been exerting every effort, such as promoting economic development, to eliminate the conditions in which terrorism and religious extremism can breed and thrive. The uncompromising action has generated positive results: No terrorist incidents have occurred in Xinjiang for nearly six years. Counterterrorism and deradicalization efforts in the region have safeguarded the fundamental interests of people of all ethnic groups, leading them to have a much stronger sense of fulfillment, happiness and security today.
Reluctant to acknowledge Xinjiang's stability and growing prosperity, some U.S. politicians and media are trying to discredit it. However, the resentment and malice on their part cannot change the fact that Xinjiang is moving in the right direction.