NGA Tearline: Geolocating Growth of Suspect “Boarding” Facilities in Xinjiang China

In Partnership with RAND Corporation

What is NGA Tearline?

NGA is partnering with expert private groups to grow public-facing, authoritative open source intelligence on various strategic and humanitarian intelligence topics that tend to be under-reported within long-form format.

This authoritative open source content will be cited for internal purposes and it will grow public trust by increasing transparency around shared public-private interest in various strategic and humanitarian intelligence topics that are fit for public consumption.

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The following report is the second installment created in collaboration with Quantitative Analyst, Katherine Pfrommer, and Senior International Defense Researcher, Ed Burke of the RAND Corporation.

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In this second Tearline report, RAND used NGA-funded commercial imagery and public Google Earth layers to identify 55 additional suspect facilities in Yutian (Keriya) County suspected of housing young children. The construction of these facilities coincided with a publicly stated policy to build “boarding schools” in Xinjiang. Western researchers and press allege that Xinjiang authorities are using repurposed and newly built schools to board Uyghur youth as part of a policy of intergenerational separation. GEOINT analysis shows steady construction progress in both 2017 and 2019 of suspect facilities in southern Xinjiang.

Read more of this intelligence report on Tearline

See Part 1 of the report for background on China's "re-education" policies and detention activity in Western China.