China's Muslims banned using their language in schools 

Authorities in China's Xinjiang region have banned China's Muslims from using their language in schools.

Last month, the Hotan government in north western China prohibited the use of the Uighur language from being used in schools including pre-school.

The new move comes after strict restrictions on Muslims in the region including a ban on fasting during Ramadan. 

A teacher leads a group of children exercising in the school's grounds (File photo)

A teacher leads a group of children exercising in the school's grounds (File photo)

Young Uyghur boys pose for a photo in Hotan, China's Xinjiang province (File photo) 

Young Uyghur boys pose for a photo in Hotan, China's Xinjiang province (File photo) 

The move was announced in a notice on the website of Xinjiang's Hotan region. 

It said that the use of the Uyghur language was banned from pre-school, all the way to secondary school. 

The notice claimed that the move aimed to 'fully popularise the national common language'. Signs around the schools also have to be in Mandarin. 

The move will come into effect in September, in time for the new school semester. 

A Uyghur official told Radio Free Asia that 'even the Uyghur textbooks will be replaced with Chinese textbooks from inland China.' 

The news was confirmed by the World Uyghur Congress who say that the ban is currently in place in one prefecture of Xinjiang province. However it's not unlikely that the ban could spread province wide in the future. 

Uyghur women outside a mosque in Hotan, China's Xinjiang province (File photo) 

Uyghur women outside a mosque in Hotan, China's Xinjiang province (File photo) 

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