Saturday, 3 December 2011

Human rights violations in Syria condemned, but the West remains silent about China and Russia

Western leaders ignore China´s gross human rights violations. Instead they choose to kowtow in the hope of better business deals and bailouts.

The UN Human Rights Council yesterday adopted a new resolution condemning human rights violations committed by the Assad regime in Syria.

The Assad regime, of course, needs to be strongly condemned. However, the UN Human Rights Council resolution now adapted, is more or less and empty gesture, because Russia and China voted against an attempt to refer Syria´s violations to the United Nations Security Council.

The Chinese and the Russian governments offer all kinds of excuses for their opposition to sanctions, but the real reasons become quite obvious, when one looks at their own human rights record:

Human Rights Watch on Russia:

President Dmitry Medvedev's rhetorical commitments to human rights and the rule of law have not been backed by concrete steps to support civil society. The year 2010 saw new attacks on human rights defenders, and the perpetrators of brazen murders in the previous year remained unpunished.

Amnesty International on China:

Amnesty International has documented widespread human rights violations in China. An estimated 500,000 people are currently enduring punitive detention without charge or trial, and millions are unable to access the legal system to seek redress for their grievances. Harassment, surveillance, house arrest, and imprisonment of human rights defenders are on the rise, and censorship of the Internet and other media has grown. Repression of minority groups, including Tibetans, Uighurs and Mongolians, and of Falun Gong practitioners and Christians who practice their religion outside state-sanctioned churches continues. While the recent reinstatement of Supreme People's Court review of death penalty cases may result in lower numbers of executions, China remains the leading executioner in the world.

China and Russia oppose sanctions against Syria because they are afraid of being targeted for their own human rights violations.

The real question is: Why are the European Union (which initiated the UNHRC resolution) and the Obama regime refusing to take any action against the gross human rights violations in China and Russia?

The answer is clear: EU leaders and Obama do not want to disturb the trade and political relations with these two major human rights offenders. Instead of rightful condemnation, we even witness increasing western kowtowing, particularly towards China.

If important business deals - and bail-outs - are endangered, Merkel, Sarkozy, Cameron, Obama and the rest simply choose to ignore human rights violations, like e.g. the state sponsored slave labour camps in China.

Sad, indeed.

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