The period from 2016 to 2020 is a decisive stage for China in the building of a moderately prosperous society in an all-round way as well as a major stage for realizing the orderly, steady and sustainable development of human rights in China.
China has implemented two national human rights action plans since 2009. As the government constantly enhances the protection of human rights, the people's standard of living and quality of life have seen further improvement, their economic, social and cultural rights and interests have been strengthened, their civil rights and political rights have been guaranteed, the public's consciousness of respecting and guaranteeing human rights has enhanced significantly, international human rights exchanges and cooperation have constantly developed, and the cause of socialist human rights with Chinese characteristics has moved up to a new level.
Nevertheless, we are keenly aware that problems, some of them serious, remain. China's economic development pattern is still extensive, unbalanced, uncoordinated and unsustainable. There is still a huge gap between urban and rural development. Difficulties need to be solved in such fields as health care, education, care for the aged, food and drug safety, income distribution and the environment -- all of which are closely related to the people's vital interests. The rule of law in safeguarding human rights needs to be further promoted and more efforts are required to realize higher levels of human rights protection.
Based on experience gained in the implementation of the first and second national human rights action plans, the Chinese government has formulated the National Human Rights Action Plan of China (2016-2020) (hereinafter referred to as the Action Plan) in accordance with the constitutional principle that the state respects and protects human rights and the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other related international human rights conventions, and in combination with the implementation of the Outline of the Thirteenth Five-Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development of the People's Republic of China. The Action Plan defines the objectives and tasks of respecting, protecting and promoting human rights in the period from 2016 to 2020.
The guiding ideology for formulating and implementing the Action Plan is as follows:
Upholding socialism with Chinese characteristics, fully implementing the guiding principles of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the third, fourth and fifth plenary sessions of the 18th CPC Central Committee, following the guidance of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the important thought of the Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development, implementing the spirit of a series of important speeches made by General Secretary Xi Jinping, following the strategic arrangement of building China into a moderately prosperous society in an all-round way, advancing reform in an all-round way, comprehensively promoting law-based government, and running the Party with strict discipline, and sticking to the innovative, coordinated, green, open and sharing development concept. The Chinese government combines human rights with economic, political, cultural and social progress, ecological protection and Party building, adheres to the people-centered development approach, puts the protection of people's rights to subsistence and development in the first place, takes the people's well-being and all-round development as both the starting point and ultimate goal of China's human rights work, safeguards social fairness and justice, and better guarantees the various rights and interests of the entire population in the great cause of realizing the Chinese Dream of rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
The basic principles for formulating and implementing the Action Plan are as follows:
Pushing forward the work in accordance with the law and bringing China's human rights work under the rule of law; pushing forward the work in a coordinated way, and promoting the comprehensive and coordinated development of the people's various rights and interests; pushing forward the work in a pragmatic way, and integrating universal principles on human rights with China's realities; pushing forward the work in a balanced way and making sure that all people enjoy equal human rights; pushing forward the work with joint efforts, with the government, enterprises, public institutions and social organizations working together to promote human rights.
In accordance with the new requirement of building a moderately prosperous society in an all-round way, the objectives of the implementation of the Action Plan are as follows:
-- Comprehensively safeguarding citizens' economic, social and cultural rights. The Chinese government will improve the people's standard of living and quality of life; upgrade the public service system and ensure more people have equal access to such services; spare no effort in poverty alleviation to lift the entire population who live under the current poverty line out of poverty; protect intellectual property rights; improve the overall ecological environment; make efforts to give people equal opportunities in development, ensure that all people share the benefits of the nation's development more equally, and increase the people's sense of satisfaction in creating and sharing benefits.
-- Protecting citizens' civil and political rights in accordance with the law. China will enforce the law in a strict, procedure-based manner, and protect citizens' personal rights and dignity; promote judicial justice and guarantee litigants' right to a fair trial; improve socialist democracy, clear and expand channels for citizens' participation in political affairs, and ensure people's rights to be informed, to participate, to be heard and to oversee.
-- Fully safeguarding the rights and interests of specific groups. The Chinese government will promote the development of ethnic minorities and regions inhabited by ethnic minorities; endeavor to eliminate gender discrimination; strengthen the protection of rights and interests of minors; respond actively to the aging of the population; improve the service system to support and help people with disabilities.
-- Conducting extensive education in human rights. China will combine human rights education with national education and nationwide education in spreading knowledge of the law; publicize the importance of human rights as represented in the core socialist values, and foster a culture featuring respect for human rights.
-- Actively participating in international human rights work. China will fulfill its obligations to international human rights conventions, get actively involved in the work of the United Nations human rights mechanism; conduct extensive human rights dialogues, exchanges and cooperation, and provide technical aid related to human rights to those developing countries that need it.
Compiled under the leadership of the State Council Information Office and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and reviewed and approved by the joint meeting for the National Human Rights Action Plan, the National Human Rights Action Plan of China (2016-2020) is hereby released by the State Council Information Office.