URUMQI, June 20 (Xinhua) -- Artists in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on Saturday refuted the "cultural extinction" fallacy recently spread by anti-China forces, saying these forces have slandered and discredited China's Xinjiang policy.
Practitioners of intangible cultural heritage, which includes the Twelve Muqam, Aken Songs, the Tajik eagle dance and the narration of Manas epics, from across Xinjiang have agreed that their respective cultures are carefully protected and promoted due to government efforts.
Ilham Reymu is a practitioner of the Twelve Muqam, the traditional music of the Uygur ethnic group. He said he has witnessed the entire process of rescuing, protecting and passing on the Muqam art.
He said that in order to promote the inheritance and exchanges of the Twelve Muqam, the government spent 5 million yuan (about 770,000 U.S. dollars) on the Twelve Muqam Inheritance Center, which can accommodate over 1,000 people performing together.
"Special training funds are allocated every year, and practitioners also enjoy financial subsidies every year," he said.
In order to continue the promotion of Aken Songs, a folk art form popular among the Kazakh ethnic group, competitions are held every year across Xinjiang, said Gahanu Wuhaas from Ili. He said he is often invited to give lectures at universities.
"I never worry that Aken Songs will be lost. The government has given us great support," he said.
Elijan Anayat, a spokesperson for the Xinjiang regional government, said that "Xinjiang Intangible Cultural Heritage Week," which concluded recently, has fully demonstrated the protection achievements of Xinjiang's intangible cultural heritage, and effectively refuted the fallacy of "cultural extinction" spread by hostile forces.