In recent years, growing domestic Uighur unrest has led to a rising threat to China's national security and internal stability.
For Beijing, the foreign policy dimension of the Uighur issue has manifested in two areas: the handling of the Uighur diaspora and refugees, and the convergence of the Uighur diaspora with religious extremism and terrorism. On the former, Beijing has consistently pursued a policy of repatriation of Uighurs back to China. As for the latter, although the real capabilities of radical Uighur groups are unknown, Beijing's concern for their potential is unsurprisingly high. Both dimensions play an interesting role in China's relations with Southeast Asian countries.