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WASHINGTON DC - The US has banned cotton imports from the powerful Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC) over concerns about the forced use of Uyghur Muslim prisoners in China's cotton textile sector.

The XPCC, a state-owned economic paramilitary organisation, produces about 85 per cent of cotton in the Xinjiang region of China which provides more than a fifth of global supplies.

The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency's 'withhold release order' (WRO) bans imports of all cotton and cotton products from the XPCC which is often referred to as a 'state within a state'.

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