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US Ignores Truth About China's Human Rights Record

The United States' decision to introduce an anti-China motion at the ongoing session of the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Commission comes as no surprise.

This marks the 11th such motion made by the United States since 1990.


Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan said on Tuesday that China is going to keep the US company to the end if it is bent on stirring up confrontation.


China has called off the bilateral talks on human rights. Obviously, the United States is more interested in confrontation than dialogue.


No country in the world is flawless. Finger-pointing and interference in other nations' internal affairs in the name of human rights is not a solution.


The United States is likely to turn a blind eye to what has happened in this part of the world.


Thanks to China's reform and opening-up drive over the past two decades, the Chinese people's living standard has greatly improved and the country's legal and social security systems have undergone substantial upgrades.


Chinese people are now enjoying unprecedented liberty and personal rights. The progress can be seen not only in the improvement in fulfilling people's basic needs and economic, social and cultural rights, but also in the strengthening of democracy and the legal construction, expansion and maintenance of civil and political rights.


Promises to protect private property and guarantee human rights were added to the Constitution earlier this month after the Communist Party of China proposed the amendments last year.


In 2003 the government's latitude to impose restrictions on individual freedom was considerably reduced. People's rights to access information got a substantial boost during the outbreak of SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), and public hearings assumed new popularity as a means for decision-making involving broad social interests.


The decades-old compulsory practice of rounding up and extraditing people found roaming in cities gave way to a sympathetic relief program, and police were prohibited from conducting unwarranted identification checks. Courts across China opened their archives on civil litigations to the public.


The authorities launched intensive crusades targeted at overtime detention of criminal suspects, forceful eviction in urban development, and default of wage payments to migrant workers.


These developments were monumental steps forward.


Certainly, further improvements are needed with regard to human rights in this country, but it is an undertaking in accordance with the fundamental interests of the Chinese people and an important goal of the government to promote the full progress of society.


In blatant disregard of the truth, Washington's human rights report issued last month saw these developments in China as "backsliding."


Concentrating on rejuvenating the nation is our top priority at the moment, and taking care of a country with 1.3 billion residents is no easy task. For better communication and common development, we should strengthen dialogues and exchanges on human rights with those countries of sincerity, based on equality and mutual respect.


As for the United States' latest anti-China motion at the annual UN human rights conference, it's doomed to fail -- just like the other 10.


(China Daily March 25, 2004)

China Suspends Human Rights Dialogue with US
China Indignant at US Human Rights Move
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