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Another global rights body criticizes China’s 2014 rights record

Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, speaks during the annual press conference of the non governmental organization in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014 (photo courtesy: AP/Michael Sohn)
Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, speaks during the annual press conference of the non governmental organization in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014 (photo courtesy: AP/Michael Sohn)

(TibetanReview.net, Jan31, 2015) – Another major international human rights group has, on Jan 29, severely criticized the government of China for its poor and deteriorating human right record with the release of its annual global report. The annual survey for 2014 highlighted mounting abuses in China’s handling of unrest in the Uyghur and Tibetan communities. It said government repression had the effect of increasing extremism among Uyghurs and discontent among Tibetans.

The report, issued by New York-based Human Rights Watch, also said China under President Xi Jinping mounted a severe attack on the rights of civic groups, lawyers, and others pushing for rule of law. It credited Xi’s government for abolishing the policy of re-education through Labor that led to arbitrary detention and for several other incremental policy reforms, but said China remained a country that “systematically curbs fundamental rights, including freedom of expression, association, assembly, and religion, when their exercise is perceived to threaten one-party rule.”

World Report/2015. Human Rights Watch.
World Report/2015. Human Rights Watch.

The report further said, “Activists increasingly face arbitrary detention, imprisonment, commitment to psychiatric facilities, or house arrest. Physical abuse, harassment, and intimidation are routine.”

The report also expressed serious concern over the fact that in 2014, which included the sensitive 25th anniversary of the killings of protestors near Tiananmen Square, Beijing “unleashed an extraordinary assault on basic human rights and their defenders with a ferocity unseen in recent years—an alarming sign given that the current leadership will likely remain in power through 2023.”

This was the second damning human rights report card for China by international NGOs in two days, after Freedom House placed Beijing near the bottom of an annual index of political and civil rights among 195 countries, noted Radio Free Asia (Washington) Jan 29.

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