Western countries aren't the only ones guilty of Islamophobia. To the far east, China has announced a ban on burqas, veils and "abnormal" beards for the residents of its predominantly Muslim province Xinjiang.

The new regulations also forces residents to watch state television and provides guidelines on how children can be educated, according to the Independent. But, for the 10 million-strong ethic Muslim Uyghur population of the province, the crackdown is only the latest in decades of state sponsored oppression.

While China's government strongly denies committing any abuses and says the latest measures are an attempt to crackdown on "extremism," activists say otherwise.

Uyghurs at the market Source: WikiMedia

Amnesty International's 2016/2017 report said that oppression of the community has remained severe over the past year.

"The government continued to detain ethnic Uyghur writers and Uyghur language website editors," the report said"The government continued to violate the right to freedom of religion, and crack down on all unauthorized religious gatherings."

The 2017 report by Human Rights Watch accused the Chinese government of continued "restrictions on fundamental human rights and pervasive ethnic and religious discrimination."

"The Chinese government has long justified censorship in minority areas as a measure to maintain 'ethnic harmony,'" the HRW said. "But ironically, this censorship fuels bigotry and ignorance – heightening already-strained ethnic relations."

Muslims aren't the only ones to suffer however. Christians and Tibetan Buddhists also face severe challenges in the country, as well as activists and journalists.

Uyghurs burning a Chinese flag at a protest in Turkey Source: WikiMedia

"Many aspects of Uyghur cultural and religious life are now being deemed ‘abnormal’ and ‘manifestations’ of extremism, and thus subject to punitive ­enforcement," James Leibold, a professor at Australia’s La Trobe University said, according to Newsweek.

Beyond the clothing and facial hair, the law specifically says it is not allowed to refuse to listen to state radio or watch state television.  The new rules also provide guidance on how the community can raise its children.

Within the Muslim Uyghur community, women have been increasingly wearing the niqab and the burqa.

While there has been an uptick in violence in China's Muslim region, which the government blames on Islamist terrorists, activists and experts say it's a reaction to state-sponsored oppression.