Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin has slammed US ambassador to China Gary Locke for the remarks he made in an interview with Charlie Rose on China’s recent human rights record.
Locke had said on the show, “The human rights climate has always ebbed and flowed in China, up and down, but we seem to be in a down period and it’s getting worse.”
At a regular press conference earlier today, Liu told the press that Locke’s remarks were “not the truth”. Also:
“China has attached great importance to promoting and safeguarding the basic rights of the Chinese people, including the freedom of belief and speech,” Liu said. “China’s progress in human rights is obvious to all”.
Liu cited a survey that shows 86 percent of the Chinese people are satisfied with the country’s development.
Liu admitted that China faces more challenges in its social development, which is natural as “we have a population of 1.3 billion and we spent only 30 years in finishing a path that took the Western world 300 years”.
Liu said China is working very hard to solve such problems and is willing to enhance dialogue and cooperation with the international community on human rights.
“But we object to interference in China’s internal affairs and the violation of China’s judicial sovereignty by making an issue of human rights,” said Liu.
Liu said it’s wrong to take a certain individual’s views as mainstream opinion in China.
“As for some individuals that have been punished by law, I don’t think it means their freedom of speech or religion is suppressed, but because they violated Chinese laws,” said Liu.