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LOS ANGELES - Japanese fashion brand Uniqlo says it is "disappointed" after a shipment of its shirts was blocked by US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on suspicion they had been made with forced labour in the Xinjiang region of China.

CBP said the shirts flouted a Withhold Release Order (WRO) on goods produced by the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC), a state-owned economic and paramilitary organisation which controls much of the region's cotton industry.

Uniqlo owners Fast Retailing say the cotton for the shirts blocked by CBP was not produced in China and the company insists the products should not have been intercepted.

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