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WASHINGTON DC - US fashion brands and retailers appear to be reducing their reliance on Chinese textile and clothing suppliers amidst concerns over the alleged use of forced labour by incarcerated ethnic minorities in the country's cotton hub.

Companies have been distancing themselves from sourcing from China's Xinjiang region - where up to two million Uyghur Muslims have been detained - which supplies more than a fifth of the world's cotton.

The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) last month issued a withhold-release order (WRO) which means that imports of apparel and textiles, and also tomato products, from Xinjiang will be detained at US ports.

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