China’s Global Threat to Human Rights. Photo: HRW

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New York — Tibetan religious figures are coerced to validate China’s repressive policy over the selection of the next Dalai Lama in the so-called political/ideological re-education session launched by China in Tibet. The forced session on the senior religious figures and the lack of freedom of speech over the matter in the occupied Tibet were reported in the World Report 2020 by Human Rights Watch.

The Human Rights Watch also labels China as a global threat to human rights in its World Report 2020. It is also stated that the Chinese government sees Human Rights as an existential threat. The communist government fears that it would obstruct their grasp on power if political freedom is permitted. China’s censorship of the internet and blocking public criticism is a direct violation of the rights to express and speech.

The report points a brute picture of the occupied territories under Chinese rule including Tibet, East Turkestan (Ch: Xinjiang) and Hong Kong with rampant mass arbitrary detentions, surveillance, indoctrination and destruction of cultural and religious heritage. So far China has been using its economic power to suppress other issues like Human Rights violations over the minorities and their fundamental rights including political rights.

Under the country list of China and Tibet, the report enlists the harsh human rights situation in Tibet in 2019. The report highlights the continued severe restrictions on religious freedom, speech, movement, and assembly of Tibetans by the Chinese authorities. The report indicates that Chinese authorities arrested, tortured Tibetans who are lawfully asking for their economic and cultural rights and are detained wrongfully. It cites the example of the two cases of land grabs in Qinghai where nine Tibetans were sentenced for raising their voices against the forceful land grabs by the Chinese authorities.

The report also notes the forceful expulsions of Buddhist monks and nuns from Yachen Gar monastery as part of the massive demolition campaign. The expelled monks and nuns are now detained in ideological re-education camps.

The report records the intensification of ‘sinicization policies’ by the Chinese authorities in Tibet Autonomous Region under which monastic populations are being subjected to ‘legal’ exams to test their competence in political re-education. The so-called political re-education requires the senior religious figures to endorse and consent to the state policies on the selection of the next Dalai Lama. These restrictions and violations of the basic rights of Tibetans have forced 154 Tibetans to self-immolate in Tibet since 2009.

Referring to the report, Representative Chhimey Rigzen, Tibet Bureau Geneva noted, “atheist China has no right to speak on the reincarnation of lamas. The question about the next Dalai Lama will be solely decided by His Holiness the Dalai Lama Himself and by the Tibetan people including Tibetan religious heads from the free world. The use of force by China on religious figures to validate its policies only goes to prove that China realizes it has no say whatsoever on this issue.”

Agreeing to China being a global threat to human rights, Special Appointee for Human Rights based in Tibet Bureau Geneva Thinlay Chukki states, “China has been trying to change the world order including the basic framework of international human rights system. China wants everything with ‘Chinese characteristics’ including human rights. It is time we rise up against China and challenge its intention to dismantle the human rights system shaped after decades of hard work by people of conscience.”

World Report 2020 is Human Rights Watch’s 30th annual review of human rights practices around the globe. The 652-page volume reviews human rights practices and trends in nearly 100 countries. In his introductory essay, Executive Director Kenneth Roth says that the Chinese government, which depends on repression to stay in power, is carrying out the most intense attack on the global human rights system in decades. He finds that Beijing’s actions both encourage and gain support from autocratic populists around the globe, while Chinese authorities use their economic clout to deter criticism from other governments. It is urgent to resist this assault, which threatens decades of progress on human rights and our future.

Chinese authoritarian officials childishly claimed they respect Human Rights, but the report says "China’s government sees human rights as an existential threat. Its reaction could pose an existential threat to the rights of people worldwide."

The totalitarian regime in China or the "Chinese Communist Party, worried that permitting political freedom would jeopardize its grasp on power, has constructed an Orwellian high-tech surveillance state and a sophisticated internet censorship system to monitor and suppress public criticism. Abroad, it uses its growing economic clout to silence critics and to carry out the most intense attack on the global system for enforcing human rights since that system began to emerge in the mid-20th century."

The report says "the Chinese Communist Party, worried that permitting political freedom would jeopardize its grasp on power, has constructed an Orwellian high-tech surveillance state and a sophisticated internet censorship system to monitor and suppress public criticism. Abroad, it uses its growing economic clout to silence critics and to carry out the most intense attack on the global system for enforcing human rights since that system began to emerge in the mid-20th century."

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