Human rights in China

Human rights violations in China are widespread, touching many sectors of society.

China is a world leader with respect to the number of executions performed. The death penalty is not only imposed for violent crimes, but for some non-violent ones, as well. Statistics on death sentences and executions are classified. Judges decisions are open to political interference and trials do not come close to meeting international standards.

Harsh measures are taken against government critics, political activists and human rights defenders. They face harassment, intimidation, arbitrary and illegal detention, enforced disappearances, torture and even the possibility of death in custody as a result of their activities.

There is systematic repression of minority groups, including Tibetans, Uighurs, Mongolians, Falun Gong practitioners and Christians and those who practice their religion outside state-sanctioned churches. The authorities attempt to bring all religious practice under the control of the state.

Migrant workers face systematic discrimination, as well. Citizens are being forcibly evicted from their homes and farms, without adequate due process or compensation.

China’s economic strength during the global financial crisis increased the country’s leverage in the domain of global human rights – and not for the better.

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Photo: At the Amnesty Canada AGM in 2008, Amnesty members marched to the Ontario Legislature wearing yellow sports bibs to demand that China Keep the Promise to improve human rights in the country as part of its Olympic bid. The march was followed by a rally at Queen’s Park, with performers and speakers, including Rebiya Kadeer.

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