Written by Steve McDonell, CNN
A confidential list of facilities allegedly used to detain Muslim detainees in the Chinese region of Xinjiang was leaked to the press, showing what appears to be a detailed inventory of everything from mosques to religious schools.
The al-Jazeera website published what it called a "forbidden list" on Friday. It documents facilities used in the crackdown on Xinjiang and contains details of everything from a monastery to a Communist Party office in the region.
A government website confirms there are detention facilities in Xinjiang, but it offers little detail. Images of facilities also published on the Chinese social media website Weibo are not identical to the al-Jazeera list.
Xinjiang is a mountainous region of autonomous China around the borders of Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. The region is home to the Uighur, a predominantly Muslim ethnic group that is culturally tied to Central Asia. They are not ethnically Chinese.
Based on user IDs on Twitter and Weibo, which al-Jazeera traced to a Chinese IP address, the alleged list likely derives from data imported by researchers into Chinese social media under a 2014 information blackout.
Chinese police could not be reached for comment.
Human rights organizations have accused Chinese authorities of holding at least a million people in "re-education camps" where they are harshly coerced into renouncing their faith.
Neither Xinjiang authorities nor Chinese state media have commented on the allegations of mass detentions. China has repeatedly said it is fighting religious extremism and terrorism.
The reported list is likely a Google translation, al-Jazeera says, which does not have the same negative tone as other information published by Chinese news sources and social media.
A Human Rights Watch analyst told al-Jazeera the list sheds light on "how little information" Chinese authorities have released on the issue.
The list states that the Uighur Uuling Mosque in Urumqi was renovated in 2010 at a cost of 2 million yuan (US$294,020). It adds that the mosque's windows have been boarded up and the bricks have been covered with clear plastic. Uighur mosques are perceived by Chinese authorities as a bastion of Uighur religious influence.
Most of the facilities on the list are government buildings, although one has been described as an "online religious science and instruction school." It notes a community center with residential accommodation and a "research" office.