Three Chinese textile manufacturers have been banned from exporting their goods to the United States over suspicions they may be using forced labor in their production lines.
International watchdogs have accused the Chinese government of setting up internment camps in the northwestern city of Xinjiang to extract forced labor from Uyghurs and other Turkic minorities, including Kazakhs and Kyrgyz.
U.S. intelligence now believes the three Xinjiang-based companies are collaborating with the Chinese government to enslave and further persecute Muslim minorities in the region.
"We do not tolerate companies that use forced labor, that abuse the human rights of individuals in order to make a profit," Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said of the decision to place the three companies on the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act Entity List, or UFLPA.
The State Department issued an injunction Tuesday, warning of China's "ongoing genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and the evidence of widespread use of forced labor there."
Beijing denies the accusations.
With the latest additions, the number of blacklisted businesses on the UFLPA has grown to 27. But critics say that number is far too small.
"There are potentially thousands of China-based companies and entities complicit in slave labor," said Senator Marco Rubio, who helped sign the UFLPA into law in 2021. "The slow pace [of U.S. sanctions] emboldens those profiting from slave labor."
Tuesday's bans come a month after the U.S. added two other China-based corporations to the UFLPA.
Companies on the UFLPA can only be removed from the list if they can prove that they are not using forced labor.