Chinainfo-icon says it has arrested tens of thousands of "terrorists" since four years ago in its volatile western Xinjiang region, which is home to millions of Musliminfo-icon minorities, including Uighurs.

The Beijing government issued a white paper on Monday on what it calls "the fight against terrorism" and "human rightsinfo-icon protection" in Xinjiang, where Beijing stands accused of being engaged in a crackdown campaign against the Muslim communities.

Since 2014, authorities have "destroyed 1,588 violent and terrorist gangs, arrested 12,995 terrorists, seized 2,052 explosive devices, punished 30,645 people for 4,858 illegal religious activities, and confiscated 345,229 copies of illegal religious materials" in the region, the paper said.

It said Xinjiang has been the scene of frequent incidents of terror attacks under the influence of separatists, extremists and terrorists, which have been harmful to the life and property of people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang and have trampled on people's dignity.

The paper also claimed legal authorities have adopted a policy that "strikes the right balance between compassion and severity." China's fight against "terrorism and extremism" was an important part of the same battle being waged by the international community, it added.

The exiled Worldinfo-icon Uyghur Congress was quick to slam the 15,000-character policy paper, with its spokesman Dilxat Raxit saying, "China is deliberately distorting the truth."

"Counter-terrorism is a political excuse to suppress the Uighurs. The real aim of the so-called de-radicalization is to eliminate faith and thoroughly carry out Sinification," he added.

Resource-rich and strategically located on the borders of Central Asiainfo-icon, Xinjiang is key to China's growing energy needs.

The autonomous region is home to around 10 million Turkic-speaking Uighur Muslims, accounting for 45 percent of Xinjiang's population. The Muslim minorities in China's west have long accused Beijing of cultural, religious and economic discrimination.

Beijing has been under fire since last August, when a UN human rights panel reported that numerous camps had been set up in China's vast Xinjiang region, holding as many as one million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims.

China rejects as Turkeyinfo-icon's "unacceptable" allegations over its treatment of its Muslim ethnic Uighur community.

Chinese officials have dismissed the allegations and instead characterized the camps as "vocational education and employment training centers" for "criminals involved in minor offenses."

They have long linked their measures in Xinjiang with counter-terrorism efforts, arguing that separatists there are bent on joining Takfiri terrorists like al-Qaeda.

Last month, Turkey accused China of exposing the Turkic-speaking minority to "torture and political brainwashing," calling on Beijing to "respect fundamental human rights of the Uighur Turks and shut down concentration camps."

Spokesman for Turkey's Foreign Minister Hami Aksoy said even those who were not detained were "under great pressure" in Xinjiang.

China, however, categorically dismissed as "unacceptable" Turkey's allegations, urging Ankara to retract the "vile" remarks.

The United Statesinfo-icon has also previously accused China of human rights violations regarding its treatment of the Uighur community.

Beijing hit back at Washington as well, calling on the USinfo-icon to "stop interfering in China's internal affairs with human rights as a pretext."