China has come under major worldwide criticism for cracking down on Muslim Uighur minority in Xinjiang which it suspects of having secessionist tendencies.
Beijing has come under increased global scrutiny in recent months as the mass scale of its crackdown on ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities living in north-western China became increasingly apparent.
China over the past few months has faced flak over its counter-terrorism policies in Xinjiang, which included creating internment camps in which up to a million Uyghur Muslims were detained and subjected to ideological reorientation.
Chinese officials have denied enforcing arbitrary detention and political re-education across a network of secret camps, instead saying that some citizens guilty of minor offences were sent to vocational centres to provide future employment opportunities.
Xinjiang says the centres will tackle extremism through "thought transformation".
"Without due process, Xinjiang's political education centers remain arbitrary and abusive", Wang said.
The bipartisan congressional commission monitors human rights and the rule of law in China.
The next day, Tianshan, a news portal run by the Xinjiang government, published a fiery essay hailing the region's crackdown as an "emancipation of the mind".
Dr Brophy said the reports that prisoners from elsewhere in China were being taken to Xinjiang indicated the policy change was more likely to be about controlling Muslim detainees than addressing overcrowding.
The regulations say they are for people "influenced by extremism".
The other 4.5 million Catholics comprise what is often referred to as the "underground" Catholic Church in China, who are dubious of party-sanctioned and elected bishops and their teachings "because they believe legitimate ecclesiastical authority can be conferred only by the Pope's mandate, and they also object to affiliation with the patriotic religious association for Chinese Catholics, the Catholic Patriotic Association (CPA)".
The ruling Communist Party has used the excuse of potential Islamic threats, "extremism" and ethnic riots to crack down on the local population in Xinjiang.
The Chinese state-run Global Times newspaper says that the "demand that things be halal which can not really be halal" is fuelling hostility toward religion.
Communist party members and bureaucrats have been told to speak Mandarin Chinese in public and not local languages. Abuse, torture and even death are reportedly commonplace. Entire families had disappeared, they said.
The legislation, proposed by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, would also support an existing push for sanctions against Xinjiang Communist Party chief Chen Quanguo and other officials under the Magnitsky Act, which would prevent Chen from entering the US and freeze any assets he has in USA banks.
Beijing has spent decades trying to suppress pro-independence sentiment in Xinjiang fuelled in part by frustration about an influx of migrants from China's Han majority.
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