China court finds Uighur scholar guilty of 'separatism'
Ilham Tohti sentenced to life imprisonment by Xinjiang court on Tuesday.

A prominent Uighur scholar has been found guilty of ‘separatism’ and sentenced to life imprisonment by a court in China on Tuesday.

Ilham Tohti, 45, a prominent economics lecturer at a Beijing university, was arrested in January accused of promoting the separation of Xinjang – China's most westerly province – from the People’s Republic.

Tohti's trial, which took place in Urumqi Intermediate People’s Court in the capital of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, was closed to the public and media.

Tohti's lawyer used his Twitter account to say his client had been sentenced to life imprisonment after being found guilty of "separatist activities."

Xinjiang is home to a number of ethnic groups including the Uighur, a Turkic-speaking minority who make up 45 percent of the region’s population.

Tohti has denied all chargers since the first day of the court’s proceedings.

Last Modified: 2014-09-24 08:01:24
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