State Department report calls for China’s “crimes against humanity” and pandemic crackdown

The State Department has accused the administration of “genocide” and “crimes against humanity” in a newly released report, highlighting the deterioration of China’s human rights records.

The annual report, which covers the human rights situation in about 200 countries in 2020, used more assertive language about Beijing’s repression in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. Such crimes “occurred and continued” primarily during the year against Muslim Uighurs and other ethnic and religious minority groups in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a speech introducing the report on March 30 that “the human rights trendline continues to go in the wrong direction” in the list of other rights infringements around the world. Mentioned the abuse of the autonomous region.

“We will bear all our diplomatic tools to defend human rights and retain responsible perpetrators of abuse,” Blinken said.

He said the toolbox included working with Congress to sanction violators and impose economic sanctions and visa restrictions. Encourage countries to “take a positive step towards respect for human rights” in terms of trade benefits and development assistance. Cooperate with allies. I speak for human rights advocates. He referred to recent joint sanctions with Canada, the United Kingdom, and the European Union for the atrocities of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region as an example of “the power of the state to speak together.”

He defended the Biden administration’s decision to rejoin the “defective” UN Human Rights Council, “in the right direction when we are seated at the table instead of outside the room. You can do more to get it working. ” “We have seen how dictatorships can use these systems to undermine human rights when we are absent.”

Blinken showed his departure from his predecessor Mike Pompeo, stopped blaming the Chinese Communist Party, and instead made his comments more general.

“”[W]Whether it’s China, Russia, or someone else, we don’t oppose any of those countries. For example, we are not trying to contain or suppress China, “he said in response to a counterattack from Chinese officials during the Alaska meeting.

“We are working to uphold an international order based on basic principles, basic rights, and rules that have served us and countries around the world very well,” he continued. “And if there is a country that somehow tries to undermine those rights or undermines its order, yes, we stand up and speak out strongly about it.”

Pandemic repression

Blinken added that the dictatorship used the COVID-19 pandemic “as an excuse to target critics and further suppress human rights.”

In the midst of the virus crisis, Beijing “disappeared” a citizen journalist who went to Wuhan and published what he saw on Chinese social media. Zhang Zhan, one of the four most prominent of them and a former lawyer, “chosen a fight and caused problems,” a common accusation used by the administration against dissidents. Was sentenced to four years in prison.

With the help of censorship automation, Beijing has deviated from the official story in the name of doubling the control of public debates about the virus, curbing government references to pandemic responses, and maintaining social stability. Punished.

A State Department report pointed out that former Beijing professor Chen Zhao Zhi was arrested following Chen’s online comment that the virus should be called the “Chinese Communist Party virus.” A Chinese elementary school teacher lost his education license in March and was detained for 10 days to cross-examine the virus counts of the authorities.

Restrictions on press freedom have also increased “significantly,” and some journalists have described a “debilitating paranoid atmosphere,” the report said.

Authorities quarantined journalists, silenced them under the guise of virus control, refused visa renewals, revoked media credentials, and deported foreign journalists. In December, police arrested a Bloomberg reporter in her apartment for “endangering national security.” China’s Foreign Correspondents Club said in its annual media freedom report that 82% of correspondents reported “interference, harassment, or violence” and 70% had their interviews suspended due to government intervention. I experienced it.

Cultural and religious repression

The report also documented the strengthening of ideological control over religious and ethnic groups, such as replacing Mongolian education with Chinese mandarin in Inner Mongolian schools.

In addition to mass detention and torture in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the Beijing administration has exposed Falun Gong practitioners in the field of meditation to brutal persecution since 1999.

The Epoch Times reported that police went to the homes of Falun Gong learners last September to force a blood sample. Experts warned that it could be a sign of forced organ removal. Some survivors of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region camp reported that they had undergone a similar test.

Zhou Xiuzhen, a Falun Gong practitioner in Hebei Province, northern China, died in April after being injured in her imprisonment and police harassment. Her husband Bian Richao has been imprisoned for his faith since 2012.