Tesla opened a new showroom in China’s Xinjiang region, where authorities have been conducting genocide against the country’s Uyghur Muslim population, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The electric car company announced it had begun operations at its new facility, which is located in the capital of Xinjiang, in a Dec. 31 post on its official account on Weibo, a Chinese social media platform, the WSJ reported.
“On the last day of 2021, we meet in Xinjiang. In 2022, let us together launch Xinjiang on its electric journey!” Tesla wrote, the WSJ reported. The post included pictures of the opening ceremony that featured people posing with “Tesla (heart) Xinjiang” placards.
An independent report found that Chinese authorities have detained up to 2 million Uyghurs in recent years and that the country bears “responsibility for an ongoing genocide” in Xinjiang. President Joe Biden recently signed into law the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, which bans companies from importing products from Xinjiang unless they can prove they weren’t made with forced labor.
Tesla has become increasingly involved in China and the brand is extremely popular within the country, the WSJ reported. Founder Elon Musk, who is also favored in China, has praised the Chinese government for its efforts to tackle carbon emissions and boost its economy, while also predicting the country would eventually become Tesla’s largest market.
Musk was named Time magazine’s Person of the Year in 2021, with chief executive Edward Felsenthal writing that “few individuals have had more influence than Musk on life on Earth, and potentially life off Earth too.”
On the same day as the announcement of the new showroom, China’s market regulator said Tesla would recall approximately 200,000 vehicles that were sold in the country, the WSJ reported. They were recalled for faulty front hood locks and issues with rearview cameras, which could lead to accidents.
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