China envoy denies Xinjiang Muslims banned from fasting: Report

KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - News reports that Muslims in China's Xinjiang region have been banned from fasting during the month of Ramadan are untrue, said the Chinese ambassador to Malaysia, Dr Huang Huikang.

"I do not think it is true. Which Chinese media have reported the news? It is not Chinese media, right?" Bernama news agency quoted Dr Huang as telling reporters after attending the Corporate Malaysia Roundtable organised by the Asian Strategy & Leadership Institute on Friday.

He said the relevant Chinese ministries would be clearing the air regarding the matter, said the report.

Foreign media on Wednesday reported that several government departments in Xinjiang had banned Muslim staff from fasting during Ramadan.

The media posted a so-called directive from the Chinese government departments prohibiting the ruling Communist Party's members, teachers and young people from fasting or participating in the religious activities during Ramadan.

Xinjiang is a mainly Muslim region, home to the Uighur minority.