China human rights 'deteriorating'

Human Rights Watch says China's internal and external rights records getting worse.

    Human Rights Watch said hopes of reform  ahead of the 2008 Olympics were misplaced [GALLO/GETTY]

    Chinese officials struck deals last year in resource-rich places such as Sudan, Zimbabwe and Myanmar - countries that have long track records of human rights abuses.
     
    "Instead, [China] insists on dealing with other governments, in the words of President Hu Jintao, 'without any political strings','' the report released on Thursday said.
     
    "China, in its quest for resources, is at best indifferent to its partner governments' human rights records," Kenneth Roth, the group's executive director, said.
     
    "Regretfully, in spite of their observations, their eyesight has always had problems. Maybe they are wearing tinted glasses, or only squinting"

    Liu Jianchao, foreign ministry spokesman

    "That often has the consequence of providing opportunities for abusive governments to avoid" international pressure to change their ways.
     
    China's foreign ministry hit out at the report, accusing the group of interfering in the country's internal affairs.
     
    Liu Jianchao, a spokesman for the ministry, said: "Regretfully, in spite of their observations, their eyesight has always had problems. Maybe they are wearing tinted glasses, or only squinting."
     
    China held a 10-day exhibition in November to show how it protects its citizens' liberties.
     
    Beijing pledged during its Olympic bid that allowing it to host the Games would help advance human rights, but critics say that is not happening and Chinese activists have urged the International Olympic Committee to press China to improve its record.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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