The International Campaign for Tibet is concerned about the recent appointment of Chinese minister Jiang Duan to the Consultative Group of the UN Human Rights Council, which will give China significant leverage over the selection of UN independent human rights experts.
China has demonstrated a hostile attitude toward the universality and interdependence of international human rights standards for Tibetans, Uyghurs and the Chinese people themselves.
Having annexed Tibet more than 60 years ago, the Chinese government has turned the formerly independent country into a police state under total control and surveillance with repression of any form of dissent or criticism.
To provide just a few examples:
- China has refused to allow the Dalai Lama to return home to Tibet since forcing him into exile in 1959. The Chinese government also arrests and punishes Tibetans simply for owning photos of the Dalai Lama or watching videos of his teachings.
- Tibetan human rights defender Tashi Wangchuk was sentenced to five years in prison for peacefully advocating for Tibetans’ right to study their own language, adding to the large number of political prisoners in Tibet. Translated court documents later showed Tashi Wangchuk’s prosecution to be a sham.
- The Panchen Lama, one of the most important leaders in Tibetan Buddhism, has been missing since Chinese forces abducted him in 1995, when he was just six years old. UN bodies have persistently called for access to the “disappeared” Panchen Lama, but the Chinese government continues to deny them.
At the UN Human Rights Council, China obstructs civil society participation and makes a mockery out of established human rights mechanisms, such as the Universal Periodic Review.
The Chinese government has repeatedly denied access to Tibet for the very same UN experts it will now get to decide on.
ICT believes China’s membership in the Consultative Group is a severe blow to the credibility of the international human rights system.