Statement by the Chinese Delegation in Exercising the Right of Reply at the General Debate under Item 2 of the 46th Session of the Human Rights Council

 

(March 1, 2021)

Madame Vice President,

 

Sweden, Australia, the United States and a handful of other countries made groundless accusations against China at the general debate under this item. Their remarks, inundated with distorted facts, have fully exposed their bias and double standards, which China categorically rejects. Regrettably, the High Commissioner for Human Rights has succumbed to political pressure and launched wanton accusations against China based on unfounded information. China firmly opposes politicization of human rights issues and interference in China’s internal affairs under the pretext of human rights.

 

China is committed to putting people first and has made unremitting efforts to promote and protect human rights. A path of human rights development that suits China’s national conditions and needs has been found with remarkable human rights achievements. Faced with the sudden onslaught of COVID-19, the Chinese government has put the safety and health of every person front and center, and made every effort to save life and defend the dignity of the people. China has secured a complete victory in the fight against poverty. The final 98.99 million impoverished rural residents have all been lifted out of poverty. This is not only an important contribution to global poverty alleviation and human rights development, but also debunks distortion and slanders of China’s human rights situation by a handful of countries. The Constitution of the People’s Republic of China stipulates that citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration. They enjoy freedom of religious belief, and the freedom of the person of citizens of the People’s Republic of China shall not be violated.

 

The Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong related issues are not human rights issues by any definition. Today, Xinjiang and Tibet enjoy social stability, economic growth, ethnic unity, and religious harmony. People of all ethnic groups there enjoy extensive rights and freedoms in accordance with the law. Xinjiang’s door is always open. We welcome High Commissioner for Human Rights to visit Xinjiang, and the two sides are in communication on the matter. But the visit should be aimed at promoting exchanges and cooperation, rather than making the so-called “investigation” under the presumption of guilt. We firmly oppose political manipulation of the issue to pressure China. Since the Law of the People’s Republic of China on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region came into force, Hong Kong has embarked on a transition from chaos to peace and order. Hong Kong citizens can better exercise their legitimate rights and freedoms in a safer environment. Turning a blind eye to facts, relevant countries fabricated and spread lies about Xinjiang, Tibet and Hong Kong in vicious vilification of China. Their attempt to smear China, undermine China’s security and stability and curb China’s development will not go anywhere. Dozens of countries have spoken at the session in support of China on Hong Kong and Xinjiang related issues, urging relevant parties to stop politicizing human rights issues and interfering in China’s internal affairs. Their just voice shows again that justice prevails in the minds of the public. While pointing fingers at other countries’ human rights situation and exerting public pressure on them, certain countries choose to turn a blind eye to the serious human rights problems of their own and their allies. This only fully exposes the fact that, for them, human rights are nothing but a tool for political manipulation.

 

China is ready to carry out international dialogue and cooperation on human rights with all parties on the basis of equality and mutual respect. However, we are firmly opposed to the despicable acts by some, out of political purposes, of making groundless accusations against other countries and interfering in other countries’ internal affairs with false information. China urges relevant parties to abandon double standards, confrontation and pressure-exerting and come back to the right track of dialogue and cooperation.

 

Thank you.