The Survivor of China’s Forcible Labour Camps launches a legal challenge to prevent British shops from selling clothing made with cotton harvested by Uighur slaves

  • UK’s government has been urged not to use so-called slave Cotton by UK businesses 
  • Legal experts claim that cotton is used by brands including Gap UK, Moss Bross, and Levi Straus.
  •  Erbakit Otarbay, who is taking the case, spent two years detained by China

A survivor of China’s forced labour camps is bringing a legal case to stop clothes made from cotton harvested by Uighur slaves being sold on British high streets.

Lawyers contend that Gap UK, Moss Bros., Levi Strauss, and Sports Direct might have accidentally stocked the garments. These companies refute this.

But supporters of the case are accusing the UK Government of failing to stop imports of cotton from Xinjiang, where two million Uighur Muslims and other ethnic minorities are locked up in ‘re-education camps’ and made to work in appalling conditions.

Erbakit Otarbay, who is bringing the case, was detained for almost two years by Chinese authorities

Erbakit Ozarbay, the person who filed the case against China, was taken into custody for more than two years.

About 80 per cent of all Chinese cotton is from Xinjiang and forensic researchers claim that materials from the camps are being shipped to textile factories in countries such as Vietnam and Sri Lanka used by top global brands (Pictured: A camp holding Uighur Muslims in Xinjang)

Xinjiang accounts for about 80 percent of Chinese cotton. Forensic researchers have found that textile materials from these camps are being sent to top-tier global brands in Vietnam and Sri Lanka.

Lawyers claim that brands including Gap UK, Moss Bros, Levi Strauss and Sports Direct may be inadvertently stocking the garments. The companies deny this

Legal experts claim that Gap UK and Sports Direct, as well as Levi Strauss, Moss Bros, Sports Direct, and Levi Strauss may have inadvertently stocked the clothes. These companies refute this assertion.

Xinjiang accounts for about 80 percent of Chinese cotton. However, forensic scientists claim materials taken from the camps have been shipped to factories in Vietnam and Sri Lanka that are used by global brands.

Chinese authorities detained Erbakit Ozarbay who brought the case. 

The spokesperson for the UK Government stated that: “The evidence of how severe and serious human rights violations were committed in Xinjiang, against Uyghur Muslims, paints a really horrifying picture which we strongly condemn. Companies should not profit from forced labor.

“The UK has taken decisive steps to address the problem of Uyghur forced labor in supply chains. The UK has introduced new guidelines on how to do business in Xinjiang over the past year, increased export controls and committed financial penalties to those organizations that fail modern slavery reporting requirements.