China’s Uighurs grapple with pull of extremism

KAYSERI, Turkey (AP) — China’s Muslim minority Uighurs (WEE’-ghurs) fleeing a stifling security crackdown in droves often end up caught in a tug-of-war between militant members of Syria-based Islamic groups and exiled moderate leaders who reject calls of jihad.

Extensive Associated Press interviews detail the daily battle some Uighur activists are fighting against the radicalization of their people.

The attraction of extremism and fighting in Syria has grown among young Uighurs who have experienced persecution in China, alarming many exiled leaders who condemn violence and say it will lead to their people’s ruin.

But they’re confronted by a young generation that sees no future under one of the world’s most powerful authoritarian governments and feels ignored by the rest of the world.