China hits back at US over rights

Beijing tells US to get its own house in order before pointing fingers at others.

    Freedom of religion in China remains limited to rituals approved by the Communist Party [EPA]

    'Cold War mentality'

     

    "We urge the US government to acknowledge its own human rights problems and stop interfering in other countries' internal affairs under the pretext of human rights," it said.

     

    China said it hoped its report would "help people have a better understanding of the situation in the United States and promote the international cause of human rights".

     

    The report took aim at a variety of issues, including civilian deaths in Iraq, child poverty, racism, mistreatment of prisoners and the place of US women in the workplace.

     

    It said naming and shaming other countries in an annual report on human rights practices was "typical of Cold War mentality".

     

    Cases of abuses were sourced to Western media reports, US government statistics and even groups such as Amnesty International that often find themselves taken to task by the Chinese government for their criticism of Beijing's human rights record.

     

    'US atrocities'

     

    "Injustice of the judiciary is quite shocking," the Chinese report said.

     

    "In some cases, defendants were sent to jail without a guilty plea or a trial, or tossed from their homes without a proper proceeding.

     

    "Abuses in US prisons are also common. The United States is the only country in the world that allows the use of police dogs to terrify prisoners," it added.

     

    The report did not mention an admission this week by Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, that the US did have its own human rights problems.

     

    China has been censured by the United Nations, whose special rapporteur on torture, Manfred Nowak, said that the practice remained widespread in the country.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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