China calls off human rights dialogue with UK

[10 April 2014] Tibet Society has learned that the UK-China Human Rights Dialogue, due to take place on 14-15 April, has been cancelled. Sources say that the Chinese government unilaterally called the meeting off due to disagreements with the UK.

China-UK flagThe Chinese government is understood to have cancelled the Dialogue for two reasons: firstly, in retaliation to the UK's intervention at the recent UN Human Rights Council session which adopted China's Universal Periodic Review; and secondly, as China did not agree to the Dialogue's agenda which was due to include issues such as freedom of expression and ethnic minority rights.

The UK's intervention at the UN related to an NGO that called for a minute's silence during the session, in memory of Chinese human rights defender Cao Shunli who died on 14 March whilst in custody. NGOs are allowed to give short statements during the UPR adoption process. China objected to the minute's silence, which the UK and other countries then supported

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