After the suppression of the uprising of the Hui Muslims in Gansu in 1873, the Qing government finally agreed on the reconquest of Xinjiang. The forces of Yakub Beg were defeated by the armies of the Qing in 1878 and Xinjiang was formally incorporated into the Chinese empire as a province in 1884. Yakub Beg failed to build an independent nation-state is because of his extreme Pan-Islamic ideology. He failed to carry out policies that favor to neither his people or the imperialist power such as Russia and Britain. Therefore, when Qing decided to reconquest Xinjiang, there were not enough supporting of him that can against Qing. However, his regime made Muslim to realized the possibility of using pan-Islamic ideology to build a nation. Later in the 20th century, when Xinjiang was under the regime of the Republic of China, there was another “Uyghur independence movement” that was inspired by Yakub Beg. A local chief called Hoja Niyaz Haji to build another short-lived Islamic regime called the Turkish Islamic Republic of Eastern Turkestan from early 1933 until the republic’s defeat in 1934. The conflict between Xinjiang and the central government was tightened again. And it was the beginning that the Republic of China advocated the identity of “Chinese” and came up with policies that promote unity among different ethnic groups.
Because of the culture difference between Xinjiang and other areas of China, and the idea of modern “Chinese” is still relatively new for people in Xinjiang, there is still debate about how to promote the unity of different ethnic groups as policy carried out by the central government. If take warning from the regime of Yakub Beg, it is certain that the local trading and infrastructure in Xinjiang are the important factor that can influence the public opinion.
For more information about Xinjiang nowadays:
Kashgar’s NEW Old City | Charms & Controversy Surrounding Rebuilt History in Xinjiang, China (2017)
Kashgar’s endangered old town | Travel | The Guardian
Book Launch: Eurasian Crossroads: A History of Xinjiang