Oral Statement - General Debate on Item 4 (“Human Rights situations that require the Council´s attention”) at the 20th Session of the UN Human Rights Council

Thank you Madam President.

The Nonviolent Radical Party (NRP) is extremely concerned about the recent deaths of two Uyghur minors in detention and the attacks on religious schools in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR), China. All three incidents fall against the backdrop of heightened security presence in Xinjiang since the death of 4 Uyghurs following clashes with police in Korla and the anniversary of a brutally suppressed peaceful protest in Urumqi on 5 July 2009 which caused ethnic unrest leaving hundreds dead.

According to the authorities, eleven year old Mirzahid Amanullah Shahyari was arrested on 20 May 2012, committing suicide shortly after. However, upon retrieval of his body, there were clear indications that he was subjected to torture, including strangulation and beatings. The conditions of Mirzahid's death are echoed by the death in detention of seventeen year old Noor-ul-Islam Shebaz on 13 November 2011.

At the time of Mirzahid's arrest, he had been obtaining a basic religious education at an “unsanctioned” school due to the severe restrictions placed on access to religious schools. His family were instructed to not speak of his death and to bury him immediately, which happened on 22 May along with police presence and without vital funeral prayers.

Subsequently, another “unsanctioned” school was raided by the police, in which 12 children, a number of school staff and three police officers were injured as police fired shots and tear gas, whilst others were reportedly kicked and beaten. According to official Chinese media, three suspects were seized during the raid on the “illegal religious preaching venue”, and that the children were rescued from “illegal preachers”. However, local Uyghurs contest the official account of the incident, believing it to be a cover up for the injuries sustained on both sides due to the heavy-handed raid by the police.

The Nonviolent Radical Party condemns in the strongest possible terms the deaths of Mirzahid and Noor-ul-Islam, for which there should be no excuse irrespective of the nature of their purported crimes. The Nonviolent Radical Party calls upon the international community and the Human Rights Council to urge China to carry out a full, independent and comprehensive investigation into these incidents and to follow closely the situation in Xinjiang as we approach the third anniversary of the crackdown in Urumqi.

Thank you Madam President.

China (Right of Reply), 22nd Meeting, 20th Session of the Human Rights Council

28 June 2012

Thank you Madam President,

The Chinese Delegation resolutely refutes the vicious attacks by the EU, the U.S., the Czech Republic, Belgium, France, Canada, Sweden and a number of other countries, as well as NGOs on the situation of human rights in China and the legitimate actions by the Chinese government to safeguard the law.

The violations of human rights in these countries are not any less grave than in the countries they are criticizing. These countries willfully detain people in peaceful assembly and limit freedom of expression on the internet. In the name of anti-terrorism, they have killed quite a number of civilians. In other countries, they practiced secret detention, and there are serious discriminations against religious and ethnic minority groups, as well as anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. Therefore, they should get their own houses in order before pointing fingers at other people. They should conduct in-depth reflection on the causes of the persistent existence of the above violations and then try to tackle these problems.

Madam Vice-President, China is a country with rule of law and according to law, China protects our people’s rights to freedom of expression. In China, holding different opinions without violating criminal law does not constitute a crime. Nobody has been detained for merely exercising the right of freedom of expression or publishing different political opinions. Yet for those who carry out criminal activities under the banner of rights protection, including taking actions of mobilizing and establishing illegal antigovernment organisations, instigating this version of government, whatever their occupations are, as long as they violate the law the judicial authority shall bring them to justice in accordance with the law. This is in line with the provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the ICCPR and other human rights instruments.

China protects according to the law the rights to religion, language, culture, peaceful assembly and other fundamental rights of its people, including various ethnic groups in Tibet and Xinjiang. In order to protect the traditions, languages, cultures and religions in Tibet, Xinjiang and other ethnic minority areas, the Chinese government has invested enormous resources and has achieved outstanding results. Some countries mentioned peaceful assembly in Tibet and Xingiang, yet those incidents were not at all peaceful assembly or protest; they were grave violent criminal incidents involving beating, smashing, looting and burning. They were directly instigated, masterminded and remotely controlled by ethnic separatists from outside China, and carried out by separatists from within China. The immolation acts by some monks and civilians were also incited by the splittest forces from outside China.

Thank you.