Uyghur Religious Intellectuals Detained by Chinese Authorities Between 2016-2018

The personal information of the following religious intellectuals is based on relevant reliable sources, descriptions of overseas Uyghur witnesses and those who had known them personally. We sorted out these information geographically based on the region that the intellectuals used to live.

  1. Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Urumchi
1.       Abdusemet Qarem: Owner of the Ezka Restaurant, advocate. Well known especially amongst young people. Originally from Qizilsu Kyrgyz Autonomous Prefecture of East Turkistan. He used to go to school in Egypt.

2.       Yusupjan Damullam: Former lecturer of Islam Institute in Urumqi.

3.       Zeynidin Abidin Mevlivi, Father of Yusupjan Damullam: experienced mentor, moved to Urumqi from Atush. He is deaf and over 80 years old, yet he was arrested by Chinese government.

4.       Mohammed Abdulla Damullam: experienced Islamic scholar, originally he was from Guma country of Hotan, he was imprisoned in Aksu in 2015. Former academic of Islamic Institute in Urumqi.

5.       Abliz Hajim: Respected religious figure in Urumqi, originally from Guma county of Hotan, he was imprisoned for sending his children to Egypt for school.

6.       Ahmetjan Damullam: He was the iman of Urumqi Konchi mosque. Originally from Guma county of Hotan. He was continuously harassed for visiting Turkey and Egypt, eventually he was arrested for that reason.

7.       Abduqader Damullam: Academic of Islam Institute in Urumqi, originally he was from Aksu;  he was a very sweet, loving person, but yet was imprisoned by Chinese government.

8.       Ahmetjan Damullam: he was a pacifist, he even advocated among Han Chinese as well.

9.       Abduweli Qarem: imprisoned by Chinese authorities, he was from Shayar county.

10.   Abduweli Qarem: pacifist, originally from Aksu.

11.   Abduwahab Dumullam: he was the iman of Urumqi Jigdichilik mosque. He was detained by Chinese police although he has never done anything that maybe harmful to Chinese government.

12.   Rejep Damullam: he was from Ghulja, used to teach in Urumqi.

13.   Anduweli Hajim: he went to school in Egypt, after return home he was disappeared.

14.   Hebibulla Tohti: He was born in Saghan Township, Yengisar County, Kashgar. He graduated from Al-Azhar University in Egypt and holds a PhD in religion.

15.   Adil Haji: He was a teacher in Islam institute in Urumqi,  graduated from Al-Azhar University of Egypt. Originally he was from Awat county of Aqsu.

16.   Shahabidin Haji: Teacher of Islam Institute in Urumqi, originally he was from Harap town, Yengisheher county of Kashgar.

17.   Abduqahar Damulla: He was an academic in Islam Institute in Urumqi.

18.   Shemshidin Damullam: he was the iman if Hejiasan mosque, the son of the renowned Mehmud

19.   Abdughopur Damullam: he was imam for  12 years in Beytulla mosque in Urumqi. 2012 he was released from his position for “illegally” visiting the holy city of Makkah and becoming haj. He was sent to the camp in 2017, after one year he was released but yet again detained not long after.

20.   Ahmed Damullam: he was a big religious figure in Gochong county, he was known by literally every body in Guchong. He was arrested in 2015.

21.   Ablimit Damullam: he graduated from Islam Institute in Urumqi, originally was from Guchong; sentenced for 15 years.


  1. Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Ghulja
1.       Abdushukur Hajim: he was arrested back in 2000, sentenced for 10 years, later he came out, and he was arrested along with his whole family in 2017. He was the father-in-law of Dr. Hebibulla Tohti.

2.       Ilshat Ekrem: Jilil-yuzi county grand mosque’s iman.

3.       Mohammed Emin: he was the Iman of one of the mosques in Jilil-yuzi, was never heard from after his detention by Chinese police.

4.       Rehmutulla Qarem: he was detained in 2016, and sentenced 10 years. He was a peaceful, loving person.

5.       Qudret Qari Hajim: he was the iman of one of mosques in Ghulja, lost contact with him since he was detained.

6.       Quddus Qudret: while he was pursuing his education in Egypt, he was forced to come home by Chinese government and hasn’t been seen ever again.

7.       Well over 100  people who used to be the student of Ablet Qarajim were detained as well.

  • Religious Intellectuals used to Live in Turpan
1.       Sirajidin Damullam: he is believed to be in the concentration camps as well.

2.       Fatima Sirajidin: the daughter of Sirajidin Damullam,  she was arrested after she returned from Egypt.

3.       Sadiqjan: son-in-law of Sirajidin Damullam, he was arrested with his wide after returned from Egypt.

  1. Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Kashgar
1.       Over 100 students of passed away Ablimit Damullam were detained and sentences long prison time.

2.       Rehmutulla Qarajim, younger brother of Ablimit Damullam, renowned Quran reciter and hafiz, he was not heard from ever since he was taken away by Chinese police.

3.       Nesrulla Qarajim,  the son of Rehmutulla Qarajim, he was not heard again after he was arrested. Last time back in 1998 he was sentenced for two years for listening to Tabligh.

4.       Jerullah Qarem: son of Rehmutulla Qarajim; studies Quran in Medine Islamic University; ever since he was arrested was not heard from anymore.

5.       Jalalidin: student of Ablimit Damullam;

6.       Mohamed Sideq Qarim:brother of  Jalalidin Qarim, since his detention, never heard from him again.

7.       Imam Qarajim: he was a student of Ablimit Qarajim. Used to be a Arabic teacher at a language school, was not heard again since he was arrested.

8.       Rozajim: he was a student of Ablimit Damullam,  resided in Kashgar city Jan-qorghan area, detained in 2017 and was never heard again.

9.       Mijit Qari: he was from Qizil Dowe (Red-Hill), his occupation was house decorator. He was also Ablimit Damullam’s student. Previously harassed and detained numerous times, the last time was detained 2017 and never heard from again.

10.   Abdurehim Borhan: he was from Kashgar, graduated Egypt Al-Azhar University in 2005, since his arrest the same year, he was not seen again as well.

11.   Mohammed Abdurahman mehsum: former imam of Chapan-baziri mosque, the son of Sulayman Ahun Damullam, the mentor for a lot of other Islamic Uyghur scholars in modern times, we should ask the Chinese government about his whereabouts!!!

12.   Muzepper Qarim: he was an advocate of peace. He was the target of constant surveillance of Chinese authority. He was detained in 2017 and was never heard from again.

13.   Memtimin Seyit: Sut-qaymaq area mosque’s hatife, he was sentenced for 20 years. His son was detained along with him.

14.   Abliz Qari; he was sentenced along with his four children.

15.   Abdurahman Qarim: he was detained by Chinese police as well.

16.   Abduqeyum Qarajim: yagh-baziri mosque’s iman.

17.   Abeydulla Qarajim: announcer of yagh-baziri mosque.

18.   Alimjan Damullam: he was from Kashgar city Doletbagh town; graduated from Yemen’s Al-Iman university.

19.   Omer Qarem: he was the owner of a restaurant in Kashgar, ever since has arrested, he was not heard from again.

20.   Mehmut Qarim: he was Hisar Temple mosque’s iman, he was also graduated from Islam institute, very loving, caring person. He was well respected for his personality, and his morality. Since he was well respected by people, there is a possibility he maybe in danger, we should keep a keen eye on his situation  as well.

21.   Qurban Qarajim: he was from the town of Doletbagh. He was a very nice, loving person as well. Ever since he was arrested, was not heard from him.

22.   Qurban Qarem: he was from town of Doletbagh, used to be the iman of Arslanhan cemetery mosque.

23.   Osman Qarem: he was one of the imans in Bulaqsu dist. In Kashgar city. In 2017, he was sentenced 14 years of prison, before that he was given the title of “One of the four most respected seniors” by local Chinese government. His father-in-law Sulayman Hajim was tortured to death in Aqtu prison.

24.   Metniyaz  Qarem: Kashgar Nezerbagh town 11 dist, area 4 mosque’s iman.

25.   Tewekkul Qarim: iman of dist. 3 mosque in Nezerbagh town, Kashgar.

26.   Yasin Abdullah: iman of Hangdi town Dist.4 Area 5, Kashgar.

27.   Idris Qari: iman of Hangdi town Dist. 4 Area 5. Mosque.

28.   Memet Qarim: iman of Hangdi town Dist. 4 Area 7 (baghmeydan) mosque.

29.   Turghun Qarim: iman of Hangdi town Dist. 2 Area.2 mosque.

30.   Mehmut Semet: imam of Hangdi town Dist.4 Area.2 mosque.

31.   Imam Qarim: was born in Malla Hinim dist. Hangdy town, Kashgar city. He memorized the whole Quran when in his early ages, and learned from a few well respected figures; he also graduated from Islam Institute in Kashgar, later he became the imam of Molla Hinim mosque. While he was presuming imam, the number of young people in the mosque increased, which caused the him to be released from his Imam duty of the mosque, he was detained by Chinese authorities in 2017.

32.   Sadiq Qari: he was the imam of Kesken-Yar mosque in Kashgar.

33.   Omerjan Qarem: he was the son of the well-know Olima (senior figure) Sadiq Hajim; he memorized the whole Quran in his early ages, he learned from his father as well. Graduated from Islam institute in Kashgar, he succeeded his father as imam of the same mosque after his father passed away.

34.   Abdughopur Hajim: he is the son of the well-known olima (senior religious figure) Sadiq hajim, he  learnt from his father while he was young, and went to school in Islam institute of Urumqi. He taught in Islamic school in Kashgar. After the school was closed by Chinese government, he became the imam of Area 2’s mosque, according to reliable sources he was sentences 16 years jail time.

35.   Abdusalam Qarim: he was the son of the Nezerbagh mosque’s prayer announcer’s. after his father passed away he carried on his father’s role in this mosque. He detained in 2016.

36.   Omer Qarim: was the imam of Jela mosque.

37.   Hashim Hajim: was born in Kashgar, he graduated both Kashgar Islam institute and Islam Institute in Urumchi. He was very familiar with the Quran besides he could recite the whole Quran. He was well respected even amongst other religious figures in Kashgar. While he gave hadith, the number of people visited the mosque per time reached almost 10,000 people almost all of them are young people; which concerned the Chinese government and took away his privilege to give hadith in mosque.

38.   Tayirjan Qarim: he was the grandson of one of the four grand imam of Id Kah Mosque.

39.   Mehmut Damullam: he was from Yarkent, sentenced with 25 years.

40.   Ablet Qarim: he was sentenced for 25 years jail time.

41.   Abduqadir Mehsum: he was born in Peyziwat County in Kashgar. He was one of the grand religious figures in Kashgar. He learnt from Sadiq Qari hajim, Qasim Qari hajim, Sulayman Damullam, Harunhan mehsum hajim. He was also the chief chairman of the Kashgar Islam institute. He was designated to be one of the editors who re-translates the Quran in modern Uyghur language, was detained in 2017.

42.   Ilyas Qari Hajim: he was born in 1976 to the house of an education advocate known as  Ablimit Hajim Kuy. He was be able to recite the whole Quran at the age of 9, and because of his talent reciting Quran, he soon became renown. He got the first place in the recitation contest in Beijing, and got the second place in the recitation contest in Saudi. He got admitted by the king himself, and got the honor to visit Beytullah. Ilyas Qari hajim studies from Sadiq Qari hajim, Abdureshit Qari hajim, Sulayman Damulla hajim, Harunhan Mehsum Hajim…etc grand religious figures in Kashgar. Graduated both Kashgar and Urumqi Islamic Institute with honor student degree. 2001, he was sent to  Al-Azhar University in Egypt to study Islam and Arabic language, 2004 he graduated and admitted for his graduate school. 2009 got his madters in Quran study and was admitted for PhD. June 18,2014, he published his thesis on Tafsir, and graduated his PhD study with honor.

he went back to East Turkistan (aka Xinjiang, a name given by China) in October in 2014. He was assigned to Islam Institute in Urumchi in 2015, he was detained by Chinese government and sentenced for 8 years in 2018!

43.   Nurdin Qarim: he was a small business owner in Bulaqsu (Bulaksu) in Kashgar, his whereabouts is unknow ever since he was detained by Chinese authorities.

44.   Sattar Qarim: he was from Kuna-sheher country Bulaqsu (Bulaksu) town No.1 Dist in Kashgar. According to the news we received, he was detained regardless he had some health condition, and got killed in Chinese detention center. In 2003, he was detained and released after 3 months, ever since he’s been the ‘active target’ and heed been under the radar of the Chinese police. 2011 he went to attend an event by invitation, he was harassed by Chinese national security agency Kashgar branch office. Originally he was from Harap town, he came to Bulaqsu in 1989 to back by public demand to do Hatib for local people.

45.   Iziz Qarim: he was from Bulaqsu (Bulaksu) county Dist. 9. Ever since his detention 2015, his whereabouts is unknow, his family lost total contact with him.

46.   Emetjan Qarim: he was the Hatib of Kona-Sheger Saybagh mosque; ever since he was detained by Chinese authorities, his whereabouts is unknown.

47.   Emetjan Qarihajim: he was from Bulaqsu county Qaribagh District. He was a small business owner, since his detention by Chinese government, his whereabout is unknown.

  1. Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Atush
1.       Rehmutulla Qarajim: he was the imam of the grand mosque of Atush.

2.       Nur Qarihaji: Ever since he was detained in Atush, no  heard from him again ….

3.       Abla Qarihaji: he was the imam of Ishtachi grand mosque.

4.       Abdusemi Damullam: he wan a teacher in Atush Islamic school.

5.       Qasimahun Helpitim: was also known Qasim-ahun helipem; he was one of the former senior teacher of Atush Islamic School.

6.       Abdusemi Damullam: he was the imam of the Uyghur community in Kichiyau in Atush.

7.       Memetriyim: he was sentenced to 20 years.

8.       Heyrulla Qari:  he was a mentor and teacher for people who wants to learn Quran.

9.       Sulayman Qarajim: he was from Dondota Dist. Aqtu county in Atush; he trained around 5000 people to read to the recent account. He was one of the brave Uyghur people who denied to dishonor the militant who fought against invader Chinese’s tyranny in the region in the recent Uyghur history; for his strong belief in not bowing in front of Chinese government, he was tortures and killed in Chinese jail and secretly buried in August 2017.

10.   Osmanjan Qarim: he was from Aqtu county Pilal town. Although was once recognized by local Chinese government as one of “top three outstanding imam”, he was still detained and sentenced for 10 years …

11.   Dawut Qarim: he was from Aqtu country Barin Dist. in in early life he partnered with other Han Chinese officials to make some money by doing legal business, he made a lot of money for Han Chinese officials, yet he was a decent, righteous man. It was still inevitable for him to be detained by Chinese authorities and sentenced to prison.

12.   Mehsum Hajim: he was from Dodora Dist Aqtu county in Atush. He was detained along with his father Sulayman Qarihajim, his family and relatives never heard back from him again.

13.   Mohemmed Sidiq: he was a very well-know Qarim his the district. He was detained at the same time with Mehsum Hajim, son of Sulayman Qarihajim. Ever since his family completely lost contact with him.

14.   Abdughini Qarajim: he was the iman of grand mosque in Atush, since he was detained by Chinese authorities, his family lost complete contact with him.

15.   Abdukirem Qarajim: ever since he was detained, no one ever heard from him again.


  1. Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Bayingholin
1.       Abliz Qarihajim: he was a writer graduated Islamic University of Madinah, Saudi Arabia. Detained and sentenced for 10  years.

2.       Abdullah Damullam: detained and sentenced for 20 years.

3.       Hidayitullah Qari: he was detained by Chinese authorities.

4.       Abdullah Qarihajim: he was detained and sentenced for LIFE-TIME!

5.       Abduweli Qari: he was from Qaraqash county in Korla. He was sent into the camp! (Chinese concentration camp for Uyghurs)

  • Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Hotan
1.       Memtiminjan Damullam:  He was a student of famous grand master Ablikim Mehsumhajim; since he was detained by Chinese authority, his family completely lost contact with him as well.

2.       Gholam Moydin Damullam: He was a very knowledgeable public speaker. When he was first detained for no obvious reason, he tried to get rid of the Chinese authorities harassment like this by giving a lot of his money (since in China so called justice is about who is willing to spend money to get their own freedom), he was released for a short period of time and then detained again; ever since his second time detention, his family never heard back from him again.

3.       Ilyashan Damullam: Yurusngqash bazaar in Hoten; on April 27, 2017 he finally got back after stayed in Chinese jail for 5 years, after one week he was detained again and sentenced for 10 years ….

4.       Ablimit Damullam: He was both iman and hatib of Ittipaq mosque; detained by Chinese police and sentenced life time ….

5.       Mohemmed Emin Qarihajim: He was detained and sentenced for 11 years in 2017, later that year he was tried second time and sentenced 10 more years (sentences for 21 years in total)

6.       Ablikim Mehsum Hajim: He was the imam of the grand mosque, once he was the deputy chairman of Chinese local political bureau. He got the name of “the father of the county”; after he was detained, he was sentenced for 10 years.

7.       Imin Damullam: He was hatib of the grand mosque in Kiriye county in Hoten; after detained he was sentenced for 30 years.

8.       Abdure’up Hajim: Son of Abdul’Ahad hajim, detained and sentenced for 10 years.

9.       Abdulitip Damollam, He is around 70 years old, he was vice president of Hotan Islamic Association and Imam of Nawagh mosque in Hotan. He was sentenced to 3 years in 2017.

10.   Memtimin Qarim, Well-known religious intellectual and teacher in Qaraqash county of Hotan, he was arrested for the crime of participating in illegal religious activities in 2017 and later sentenced to 10 years in prison.

11.   Ekhmet Hajim, Well-known Imam and businessman in Qaraqash. Chinese regime arresetd and imprisoned him for unkown reasons. His current situation is unkown.


  • Religious Intellectuals Used to Live in Aqsu
1.       Ismael Damullam: before his detension, he made his living by treating people using Uyghur traditional medicine.

2.       Abduhaliq Damullam: he was a former Aksu Islamic schools teacher (classmate of Yusupjan Damullam in Atush); he was the reason of the awakening of young people in Aksu, and the unification of people in the region. after he was detained, was sentenced for 7 years.

3.       Ablikim Damullam: he was the former imam of the Qizil-Kol mosque in Aksu.

4.       Memet Hoshur Damullam: he was the hatib of the grand mosque in Besh-toghraq town in Aksu city. He was a very good hatib, back in 2014, he was detained and sentenced to 20 years.

5.       Omer Qarajim: he was the owner of a little shop in front of Vangsen mosque in Aksu, got his masters degree in the International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan. This person was also detained for no legal reasons.

6.       Hasan Qari: he was at his early 30s, resided in Besh-tugmen town, he was one of the most influential young men in Aqsu, who was hard working and mastered Arabic literature, he was a young men studies day and night to increase his knowledge. His perception is most close to modern Arabic scholars.

7.       Abduzahir Hoshur: he is probably between 33-37 years old. Was from Uch-turpan county in Aksu (Aqsu), he was also one of the young scholars who spend their time in studying.

8.       Tahir Hoshur: he was from Bash-tugmen town. He also dedicated most of his time to motivate young people to work hard, and stay away from bad living habits (like drinking alcohol regular bases, smoking weed, have unhealthy life style …etc), he was also between the age og 33-37; detained by Chinese authority.

9.       Tohti Qari: detained by Chinese authority.

10.   Omer Metniyaz: he was from Besh-tugmen town. He also devoted a lot of his time in motivating young people to have a right life style (instead of negative life style covertly encouraged by Chinese government that they Uyghur young people should adopt). He was also between the age of 33-37.

11.   Qader Qarim: he was the imam of the mosque of electric switch factory.

12.   Sattar Damullam: he was one of the grand religious figures in Kucha county in Aksu. Sentenced for 20 years.

13.   Abdurehim Damullam: he was detained by Chinese authority.

14.   Nurhommed Damullam: detained by Chinese authority.

15.   Abdulhekim Damullam: detained by Chinese authority.

16.   Ahmed Damullam: he was the imam of Leng’ger koqruk mosque in Aksu. During his long term occupation as imam, he gained respect from both the people and the local government. For was also acknowledged by the government numerous times. When the time came, he was still detained and also directly sent to prison, not even the camp. According to some news, he was sentenced 20 years, another source, he might have been sentenced for 25 years. (either way spending that much time in prison is not acceptable just because they have the judicial right to do so)

17.   Nurmohemmed Sawut Damullam: he was from Aksu, later bought a house in Urumqi, after he was detained, according to some sources, he was sentenced for 25 years.

18.   Mehmud Qari: he was the former imam of a grand mosque in Aksu. Detained in 2015, no clear how long years he was sentenced for … ( there is no transparency, especially when it comes to Uyghur people, they can sentence whatever years they may see fit …)

19.   Ablikim Damullam: detained by Chinese authority.

20.   Yasin Qari: detained by Chinese authority and sentenced for 20 years.

21.   Abdurahman Qari: detained by Chinese authority and sentenced LIFE-TIME!

22.   Abdurahman Damullam: he was from Kelpin county Aksu city. He want to Yemen to study modern Islam, after he came back from his study, he advocated the young people to understand and learn the islam in more modern ways. He was also a bit influential amongst young people, detained by Chinese authority in 2015, and sentenced for 25 years in 2015.

23.   Ablet Qari Ahunum: was sentenced for 7 years. detained by Chinese authority and sentenced for 7 years.

24.   Quddus Qarim: he was not heard since he was sentenced.

25.   Rozi Hajim : graduated from Sheikh Mohammed University in Saudi Arabia. After his return he stayed in Aksu till his recent imprisonment by Chinese government.


Last up-dated on March, 2019


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