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World News | China faces grilling in UN committee review of key rights

World News | China faces grilling in UN committee review of key rights

The LATAM Airlines plane hit the vehicle on the runway (Image: Twitter / @AirCrash_)

GENEVA, Feb. 15 (AP) — China held two days of hearings at the U.N. human rights office on Wednesday about its human rights record, with human rights advocates raising issues such as relocation from Tibet, COVID-19, Issues such as reprisals against human rights defenders in Tibet and a national security law that sparked protests in Hong Kong.

As advocates of China’s Uyghur minority protested loudly outside, Chinese Ambassador Chen Xu and a delegation of about 40 envoys from China, Hong Kong and Macau faced questioning by the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which Respect for these rights is reviewed every few years by all UN Member States in recent years.

Read also | China threatens US entities to shoot down spy balloons off US East Coast.

The six-hour hearing marked the first time a Chinese delegation traveled to Geneva to respond to the UN agency since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, UN officials said.

In his opening remarks, Ambassador Chen listed a series of achievements, including China’s poverty alleviation, education, life extension and support to other countries.

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“No one can claim that the record in human rights protection is perfect, as there is always room for improvement. China still faces many problems and challenges in promoting and protecting economic, social and cultural rights, including “obvious imbalances,” Chen said. development and “stumbling blocks” in some areas of reform.

He cited issues in areas such as education, employment, healthcare, housing and the environment.

The hearings revolved around issues submitted by nearly 20 nongovernmental organizations and were moderated by independent experts working with the United Nations to form the committee, which aims to help countries fulfill their commitments under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Michael Windfuhr, deputy director of the German Institute for Human Rights and the committee’s China rapporteur, raised a series of issues on discrimination, access to lawyers and assurances that Chinese multinationals will not harm human rights abroad question.

“Dealing with China within six hours, dedicated to national censorship, is a challenge for the committee,” he said.

“The committee will therefore give priority to the most pressing human rights issues under the Convention.”

He asked how many organizations were classified as endangering national security under Hong Kong’s controversial national security law, and how China would increase transparency in sharing data about COVID-19 with the international community.

But Hong Kong officials insisted, in English, that the national security law has specific provisions for respecting human rights, especially in the context of some union activities that they say violate the law and have nothing to do with labor rights.

“The Hong Kong (special administrative region) government is committed to defending and protecting Hong Kong’s legal rights and freedom of association,” said Zhang Haishan, assistant director of the Hong Kong Labor Department.

At the end of the hearing on China, which ends Thursday, Chinese representatives are expected to provide at least some answers. China is one of six countries before the panel this month. (Associated Press)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a Syndicated News feed, the content body may not have been modified or edited by LatestLY staff)

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