Cameron must deliver on promise of human rights advocacy with China

 English version after  an extract in Chinese

----start in Chinese-----------

华维藏团结会致即将访华的英国首相公开信

要求将人权问题置于首位,会见人权捍卫者,向媒体公开关于人权问题的声明,尤其直接向中共领导人提出下列问题:废除所有形式的任意拘押; 释放包括刘晓波、凯雷姆·阿不都外力(Kerem Abduweli)和所有其他良心犯; 立即批准国际公民权利和政治权利国际公约;立即废除死刑, 释放被判死刑的卓玛嘉(Dolma Gyab);对所有媒体、外交人员和国际观察员开放全部藏区和维吾尔区;执行联合国禁止酷刑委员会2008年审查中国的全部建议; 立即结束强制移植人体器官; 遵守和维护《世界人权人权宣言》。

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[29 November 2013] Human rights activists in the UK are calling on David Cameron to stand by his government’s stated policy of advocating human rights [1] when he meets Chinese President Xi Jinping next week in China.

 

Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity UK, a coalition of UK-based human rights organisations, has written to the British Prime Minister prior to his State Visit next week [see letter below]. The coalition is calling on Cameron to:

 

1. Raise human rights directly with Chinese President Xi Jinping and other senior Chinese ministers,

2. Engage with civil society by meeting human rights defenders,

3. Make a public statement calling on the Chinese government to commit to substantive progress on human and civil rights for all its citizens including ethnic minorities.

 

“David Cameron talks about his visit to China bringing “real rewards for our peoples” [2], but at what cost and who will actually benefit? Real rewards for those living under Chinese Communist Party rule would be to see an improvement in their human and civil rights, ” said Philippa Carrick, CEO of Tibet Society. “The British government has put human rights at the core of its foreign policy and is the first country to set out guidelines for integrating human rights into business [3]. This visit gives David Cameron a real opportunity to stand up for his own government’s policy.”

 

Ms Carrick added, “David Cameron must not shy away from raising human rights issues in China, including the continued use of the death penalty, implementation of the rule of law and lack of minority rights. Indeed, it is in China’s interest that he is frank and open as respect for basic human rights is integral in building a happy and harmonious society and is integral to a healthy trading relationship.”

 

Specifically, Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity UK is calling on David Cameron to urge the Chinese government to:

• Abolish all forms of arbitrary detention;

• Release all prisoners of conscience;

• Ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

• End the use of the death penalty;

• Provide open access to Tibet and East Turkestan (Xinjiang) including foreign media, diplomats and international observers;

• Implement the recommendations from the UN Committee Against Torture 2008 review of China;

• End the practice of forced organ harvesting;
• Adhere and uphold the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

 

The coalition is also asking for three individual cases to be raised: Liu Xiaobo [4], the Nobel Peace Prize winner who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for calling for multiparty democracy and respect for human rights in China; Kerem Abduweli [5], a Uyghur imprisoned since 1990 for allegedly forming a political party promoting terrorism despite a lack of evidence and lack of due process; and Dolma Gyab [6], a Tibetan sentenced to death for the alleged murder of his wife who died after self-immolating.

 

[end]

 

Contact:

Philippa Carrick (Tibet Society): philippa@tibetsociety.com, 020 7272 1414, 07941 105 485

 

Available for interview:

Shao Jiang (Chinese): t.shaojiang@gmail.com, 07961 948 852

Enver Tohti (Uyghur): etbugda@gmail.com, 07950 674 306

Tenzin Samphel (Tibetan): tenzin_samphel@yahoo.com, 07989 792 006

 

Notes

1. On 3 September 2013, the Foreign Secretary stated in Parliament, “We should always be clear in the United Kingdom about our belief in universal human rights and never be afraid to give our advocacy for those rights. That includes relations with China.” http://www.tibetsociety.com/content/view/420

 

2. On 11 November 2013, when announcing the visit to China, David Cameron said, “I will take senior British ministers - as well as business leaders from every sector, large and small - to forge a relationship that will benefit both our countries and bring real rewards for our peoples.” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-24906730

 

3. Business & human rights report: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-first-to-launch-action-plan-on-bu…

 

4. Liu Xiaobo: http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/2010/xiaobo-fact…

 

5. Kerem Abduweli: http://www.rfa.org/english/news/uyghur/risk-08282012185841.html

 

6. Dolma Gyab:  http://www.tibetsociety.com/content/view/418 &

http://www.tibetsociety.com/content/view/420

 

Letter sent to Prime Minister

 

Prime Minister David Cameron

10 Downing Street

London SW1A 2AA

 

27 November 2013

 

Dear Prime Minister,

 

We, the organisations and individuals forming the UK-based coalition group Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity, would like to thank the UK government for standing up for the rights of ethnic minorities during China’s Universal Periodic Review at the United Nations in October. We were also encouraged to see you taking a firm stand on human rights in Sri Lanka during the recent Commonwealth Summit. We very much hope you continue to use appropriate opportunities to raise and promote human rights during your upcoming trip to China.

 

Your trip comes at an important time for human rights in China. As well as China’s Universal Periodic Review in October and the election to the UN Human Rights Council on 12 November, the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party held its Third Plenum earlier this month. Following the Third Plenum, Chinese leaders announced the abolition of ‘re-education through labour’ camps and the banning of the use of torture to extract confessions. These developments are welcome, however, the Chinese government must be encouraged to not only fulfil these pledges but to do more, as all too often their pronouncements are meretricious in nature.

 

We call on you to urge the Chinese government to:

•  Abolish all forms of arbitrary detention;

•  Release all prisoners of conscience;

•  Ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

•  End the use of the death penalty;

•  Provide open access to Tibet and East Turkestan (Xinjiang) including foreign media, diplomats and international observers;

•  Implement the recommendations of the UN Committee Against Torture from China’s review in 2008;

•  Adhere and uphold the 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;

•  End the practice of forced organ harvesting.

 

We urge you to not only raise human rights directly with Chinese President Xi Jinping and other senior Chinese ministers, but to engage with civil society by meeting human rights defenders. We also ask that you make a public statement during your trip, calling on the Chinese government to commit to substantive progress on human and civil rights for all its citizens including ethnic minorities. Such a public statement would not only keep the spotlight on China’s human rights record, but also give hope and encouragement to Chinese, Uyghur and Tibetan human rights defenders whose voices the Chinese Communist Party continue to try to silence.

 

In particular, we ask that you raise three individual cases:

 

Liu Xiaobo, who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for authoring Charter 08 which called for multiparty democracy and respect for human rights in China. His subsequent award of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010 only further highlights the Chinese Communist Party’s immoral efforts to stifle and eradicate free speech.

 

Kerem Abduweli, a Uyghur who has been in prison since 1990 and had four extensions to his original 12-year sentence. He was arrested for allegedly forming the Islamic Reformist Party, charged with “carrying out counter-revolutionary propaganda and agitation”, and despite a lack of evidence sentenced in a closed trial without due process.

 

Dolma Gyab, a Tibetan nomad, was given a death sentence in August 2013 for the alleged murder of his wife who self-immolated in March. It is feared the only evidence used against Dolma Gyab was a confession extracted under torture, and the sentence is suspected to be politically motivated.

 

Please call for the immediate release of Liu Xiaobo and Kerem Abduweli, and for Dolma Gyab’s death sentence to be commuted and his case to be urgently reviewed.

 

Finally, we would like to remind you of your Foreign Secretary’s statement, made in Parliament on 3 September, “We should always be clear in the United Kingdom about our belief in universal human rights and never be afraid to give our advocacy for those rights. That includes relations with China.”

 

We urge you during your visit to China, to not be afraid to stand up for truth and justice, to be clear and frank with the Chinese leadership on implementing the rule of law and accepting the universality of human rights, and to deliver a message that extends support and solidarity to China’s civil society.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Philippa Carrick

CEO, Tibet Society

on behalf of Chinese, Uyghur & Tibetan Solidarity UK

 

Chinese, Uyghur & Tibetan Solidarity UK opposes the tyrannical rule of the Chinese Communist Party and upholds the values of freedom, human rights and democracy.

 

Chinese, Uyghur & Tibetan Solidarity UK is made up of the following organisations: Chinese Solidarity Campaign, Federation for Democratic China, Friends of Tiananmen Mothers, Tibetan Community in Britain, Tibet Society, Tibetan Youth UK, Students for a Free Tibet UK, Uyghur Association and Uyghur Community UK.

 

Paul Golding

Campaigns Coordinator

paul@tibetsociety.com

020 7272 1414

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