Andrew has been protesting outside the Chinese embassy office in Hampstead every Tuesday and Wednesday for nearly a year ( Evie Breese )
Standing by the side of the road, a lone protester pivots backwards and forwards to display his sign to every passing car. It reads: “3 Million Muslims in Chinese Concentration Camps.”
Andrew pitches up at the Chinese Embassy office in leafy Hampstead every single Tuesday and Wednesday. Sometimes he has company, but often he is alone. He’s been coming without fail for almost a year.
In late 2018, satellite images of the camps in which Uighur Muslims are being detained for what China has termed “re-education” began to emerge. Before then there had been unsubstantiated rumours of the facilities, but for Andrew, this was “undeniable proof” of concentration camps in Xinjiang.
“Because of my personal history. I didn’t feel I could sit at home,” he says.
Andrew describes himself as a “typical Orthodox Jew”. He lives in London’s Golders Green with his family, and works as a businessman. While he is protesting against one of the world’s greatest superpowers, he says he does not feel safe sharing his full name.
China has been accused of genocide by experts as reports of ethnic minority Uighur women forced to have abortions have emerged. Women who escaped the high-security camps also spoke of widespread sexual torture. UN figures have put the numbers of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities forced into “political camps for indoctrination” at between one and two million, while Andrew took his statistic of three million from a UN special rapporteur.
More recently, China has also started to demolish Uighur graveyards.