Undercover: Inside China’s Digital Gulag

Imagine a place where technology is used to control an entire ethnic population with a million or more estimated to be held in re-education camps… Our cameras go undercover into China’s secretive Xinjiang region to investigate.

The Chinese government is holding an estimated million or more Muslims in detention camps without trial. It’s the largest incarceration of an ethnic group since World War II. Twelve million other Muslims are living outside in – what campaigners say is – an open prison, with bar codes on their doors, part of a human laboratory where Chinese technology companies have created the world’s most sophisticated surveillance state.

Cameras go undercover into China’s secretive Xinjiang region to investigate. They record honest and critical voices, talking about the scale of the human rights abuses, hearing from – amongst others – a Chinese government official, Uyghur Muslims, technology company executives, ordinary Han Chinese and a manager in the security sector.

The undercover team gathers evidence of the Chinese government’s work with technology companies, revealing a new form of governance that is controlling citizens and being exported around the world, challenging human freedom and liberal democracy. The film follows the victims of this new system. It looks at the wider strategy which the Chinese government seems to be pursuing in Xinjiang, which appears to threaten the very survival of Uyghur and Muslim culture in China.

Directed, Produced, and Filmed by Robin Barnwell
Producer: Gesbeen Mohammad
Film Editor: Guy Creasey
Executive Producer: David Henshaw