Jonathan Mirsky

Rebel Province

Wild West China: The Taming of Xinjiang

By

John Murray 314pp £20 order from our bookshop

THINK OF A vast area, inhabited by a small population of deeply religious people, and occupied by the Chinese, who despise the local culture and crush dissent. Tibet, surely. Could be – but this much-needed book is about Xinjiang, the far-western ‘Semi-autonomous Region’ which the Chinese have tried to subdue for over two thousand years. It comprises about one sixth of the area of modern China, with a population, mostly Muslim, that makes up one-sixtieth of the national total.

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