This project sets out to investigate the role of security in the Chinese Western Development Plan (WDP) and its application in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, along with the consequences of this for the Uyghur community. The analysis of this project begins by unraveling the historical role of security and the central components in the Sino-Xinjiang relation. Combined, these form the context from which the WDP was formulated and implemented in Xinjiang. Through an analysis of the rhetoric of the WDP we establish that the role of security accords with that of a non-traditional security agenda, as opposed to the previously dominant traditional-military security agenda in Sino-Xinjiang relations. However, this change in the role of security remains rhetoric, as the traditional-military security agenda that re-emerges with the formation of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and the Global War on Terror not only co-exists with but gains prominence over the non-traditional security agenda of the WDP. As a consequence, the Uyghur population of Xinjiang continues to be sidelined by the Chinese government, despite the promise of the WDP.
free text keywords: China, Uyghur, Development, Relations, Security, History, The Western Development Plan, Xinjiang