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Uyghur Activist Says Meeting With Bush 'Significant'

Rebiya Kadeer lives in exile in the United States (AFP) June 7, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- A leading activist of China's Uyghur Muslim community, Rebiya Kadeer, has described her June 5 meeting in Prague with U.S. President George W. Bush as a significant milestone in her fight for the rights of the Uyghur community, RFE/RL's Uzbek Service reported.

Kadeer told RFE/RL 's Uzbek Service that her people were waiting for such a meeting for several decades.

Bush, in his June 5 speech in the Czech capital, praised Kadeer for bringing to attention human-rights violation in the Uyghur-inhabited Xinjiang Province.

Beijing has condemned Bush's meeting with Kadeer.

Kadeer now lives in exile in the United States, but her three sons remain in a Uyghur-populated region of northwestern China.

Kadeer's youngest son, Alimu Ahbudurimu, was been sentenced to seven years in prison by a Chinese court for tax evasion, while another son, Kahaer Ahbudurimu, has been found guilty of the same charges but was spared a jail term.

On April 17, her third son was jailed for nine years for secessionist activities.

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