China:Quote has been trimmed
Limited legal and judicial reforms did little to improve human rights protection. Tens of thousands of people continued to be detained in violation of their human rights and were at risk of torture or ill-treatment. Thousands of people were sentenced to death or executed. The authorities frequently resorted to the use of force against growing social unrest. There was a renewed crackdown on the media and Internet controls were tightened. The Uighur community in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) continued to face severe repression as part of the authorities’ “war on terror”. Freedom of expression and religion continued to be severely restricted in Tibet and other Tibetan areas. China’s arms sales to Sudan raised concerns that its actions were contributing to human rights violations in other countries. China continued a limited dialogue with selected members of the international community on human rights issues. However, human rights defenders at home continued to be arbitrarily detained and some were sentenced to prison terms...
...Human rights defenders
Individuals continued to use China’s petitioning system, and sometimes the courts, in an attempt to obtain redress for various abuses. However, fundamental weaknesses in both systems left many without redress, fuelling an increase in social protests throughout the country. New regulations were introduced in May in a stated attempt to provide better...
Indigenous women and girls continued to suffer a high level of discrimination and violence. There were concerns that counter-terrorism practices did not conform to human rights obligations.
...Security and human rights
A public inquiry continued into Canada’s role in the case of Maher Arar, a Canadian-Syrian national who was deported in 2002 from the USA to Syria where he was detained without charge for a year and tortured.
There were concerns about three other dual Canadian nationals who had been detained and tortured abroad: Abdullah Almalki, of Syrian origin, held in Syria for nearly two years; Ahmad Abou El-Maati, of Syrian origin, held in Syria and Egypt for over two years; and Muayyed Nureddin, of Iraqi origin, held in Syria for one month. The government refused to hold a public inquiry into the cases.
Four Muslim men remained in detention pending deportation and a fifth was released on strict bail restrictions, all pursuant to security certificates issued under the 2001 Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. The men faced a serious risk of torture if deported. Under security certificate proceedings, detainees only have access to summaries of evidence and no opportunity to challenge key witnesses.
There were reports that Canadian forces in Afghanistan were handing over detainees to US forces without reliable assurances that the detainees would not be subjected to the death penalty, and would be treated in a manner consistent with international humanitarian law and human rights obligations.
Omar Khadr, a Canadian national arrested by US forces in Afghanistan in July 2002 when he was a minor, remained in US custody in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, where he had been since November 2002. In August an interim injunction was granted by the Federal Court of Canada prohibiting Canadian officials from questioning Omar Khadr unless this directly related to providing him with consular assistance...
web.amnesty.org/report2006 (external - login to view)
Cultural traditions like the avoidance of naming an injustice for what it is in the name of assuring one's own well-being within the social structure being criticized is one thing, but scurrying under a banner raised to cultural tradition is quite similar to the Islamist view of cartoons and interpretations of the Quran that offend....
The western mind prizes the material, objectifies values in symbols that are bought sold and traded without appreciating the significance of this behavior. Westerners are guilty of many grave injustices to the planet and the people of many nations who've never known a degree of prosperity or "freedom" that the westerner takes for granted. Part of that freedom is naming an injustice as an injustice. Is the cultural "value" the "currency" of propriety a means to enhancing or erroding the perceptions of Chinese folk when they compare east and west? If a nation of people realize an increase in their individual well-being and quality of life through adopting western trade and commerce, doesn't it seem appropriate that the manifestation of "freedom" that comes with self-reliance through trade is capable of establishing includes reevaluating some cultural traditions?
1. Canada’s Trade with ChinaQuote has been trimmed
China is now the world’s second largest economy after the United States, as measured by the purchasing power of GDP. Its export sector represents about one-quarter of GDP five times more than in 1978 when economic reform began to progressively open it up to the rest of the world. In 2003 alone, it rose three places in the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) ranking to third with 5.3% of global imports, behind only Germany (7.7%) and the U.S. (16.8%). China’s growth has contributed to the recovery of its Asian neighbours, and more recently to rising exports from North America. At the same time, China continued to meet most of North America’s growing appetite for imports. This boosted it to fourth place in global exports with a 5.9% share, behind Japan (6.3%), the U.S. (9.7%) and Germany (10.0%).
This article documents how Canada’s trade with China has evolved over the last 15 years in the
context of the broad shifts in China’s trade with the world.2 Canada...
Quote has been trimmed, See full post:
It certainly is appropriate to examine each nations record on human rights, if for no other reason than to compare the effectiveness of particular ideological “models”. A comparison in terms of a particular ideology’s contribution, interpretation and actualization of the concept of “human rights” with another nations expression of “human rights”.
Conceptual systems like the United Nations 1948 “Universal Declaration Human Rights” rely for their substance on the will and effort of both government and individual’s in actualizing its principles. No individual can claim familiarity with the concept of “human rights” without having examined their own nation’s legal system and explored the history of how one’s own nation has exercised these principles. Comparing one nation’s or one people’s statement and execution of the concept with a different nation reveals a great deal about the people of any nation.
But one must always keep in mind that what we’re talking about is a conceptual model not a binding system of jurisprudence. While an electoral process might achieve something akin to Article 21’s “will of the people shall be the basis of the...
So if cultural imperatives like “One shouldn’t speak out about human rights abuses by the communist regime in Beijing… “because we must always show reverence and respect for our nation’s leaders……” are the rule of the day when it comes to China, how does one let an oppressive regime know that its human rights record is unsatisfactory?
Quietly whispered in the washroom at the U.N.”?
We’ve been conditioned to accept that criticism leveled at the oppressive regime in Jerusalem is the same as anti-Semitism….so the effectiveness of declaring displeasure at disproportionately brutal responses to rocket attacks and Israelis kidnapped by Palestinian’s “quietly” continues while people die….
Does the same rule apply here Earth_as_One?
“Oh no we can’t have any overt criticism of the government in Jerusalem spoken aloud, that would be offensive and counter-productive since our criticism will be dismissed as anti-Semitism….”
Kindly cease and desist posting your negative criticisms regarding the Israeli government…you’re not working to solve the problem only inflaming the situation….
I suppose we could all just be quiet about human rights abuses and let the abusive dynamic unfold however the strongest and most prepared to oppress and abuse have their way, then when there aren’t any more rights to protect for anyone we can be self-satisfied that we didn’t offend anyone….
Am I on the right track here Earth_as_One?
We can continue to empower the abusers by providing them the resources needed to reinforce and entrench the systemic flouting of human rights…i.e. we can continue to play the “trade-game” with China and we can happily accept the continued arming and financing of Israel by the U.S.?
Are you suggesting that saying something is counter-productive in eliciting self-evaluation by the abusing regime and besides there’s benefits that accrue to those in support of oppressive regimes like mounting wealth (China) and consolidating the Jewish vote come election time (America)….
If not saying something is the more diplomatic route, then surely the investment dollars anxiously waiting in the coffers of the Beijing government should be welcomed in Canada (Athabaska Tar Sands) despite the fact that this money might well have been better spent in China to ease the suffering of those languishing under a totalitarian regime.
We certainly wouldn’t want to say … “Nope sorry China, we won’t conduct business nor permit investment from your nation due to your continuing intransigence regarding human rights….”
How could that be interpreted as anything other than a “cultural-slight”?
Our criticisms should be couched in fluffy clouds of rhetoric that have no sharp edges, best expressed through a nod and a glance but better yet left completely unspoken?
While people die at the hands of murderous oppressors the world over we simply shrug our shoulders roll our eyes and look the other way?
What is the magical nuance that differentiates a criticism of human rights abuses by any government as a cultural insult on one occasion but renders that criticism acceptable on some other occasion?
Or if you’re suggesting we just say and do nothing why do you bother attempting to incite passion regarding the Palestinian situation?
Machjo: “It's really an issue of national pride and face, a very big issue in Chinese culture.”
If saving face as cultural imperative supersedes the importance of rights in Chinese culture then why is anyone bothering with discussing this issue?
Just ignore it all…..
It would be interesting to weigh the consequences of a total ban on Chinese goods. No traffic either way for Canadians or Canadian companies. I know China is flooding the world with cheap textiles, sporting goods, electronics, furniture and more. A lot of this is closing down domestic enterprise everywhere. If we took a stand on principle and kicked China out of our marketplace would it be an overall win for the Canadian economy?
It's great to see Harper take the stand. Anyone who knows anything about China is aware of the longstanding and growing international concerns about what it does at home and what it encourages abroad as far as human rights are concerned and resource management. China needs to be curbed. I wonder what Harper has up his sleeve. To publicly pull the tail of the tiger is seemingly risky business. There's more here afoot than meets the eye.