(TibetanReview.net, Mar23, 2014) – In a weeklong visit seen as a goodwill call and designed to avoid sensitive subjects, US First Lady Michelle Obama on Mar 22 could not resist taking a dig at the Chinese government for its cruel and repressive ways of putting down the country’s civil rights-starved citizens. Addressing an audience of Chinese and US students at the Stanford Center of Peking University, she said, “When it comes to expressing yourself freely, and worshipping as you choose, and having open access to information – we believe those are universal rights that are the birthright of every person on this planet.”
She called on China to respect universal rights including freedom of expression and religion, and open access to information, reported USAtoday.com Mar 22.
Although she did not specifically mention China, the country’s communist party government was clearly her target. After all, China heavily censors the Internet, jails citizens who speak too freely on political subjects, and restricts religious groups, the report noted.
The First Lady was meant to focus on education, embrace pandas, ping-pong and people-to-people diplomacy during her visit. In particular, the White House stressed, ahead of her trip, that she would avoid sensitive subjects. She is visiting in the company of her Chinese counterpart, her mother and two daughters.