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China’s human rights record criticised at UPR

China's human rights record was criticised by western nations such as France, Germany and the United States this week during the country's Universal Periodic Review at the UN Human Rights Council.  

Member states at the Counil called on China to close detention centres where an estimated million Uighur Muslims are said to be detained. 

Denying the reports, China’s vice foreign minister Le Yucheng, who was a delegate at the Council, argued that the accusations were "politically driven accusations from a few countries which are fraught with biases".
The US representative, Mark Cassayre said, "We are alarmed by the government of China's worsening crackdown on Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other Muslims in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region".

Echoing the US message, French ambassador Francois Rivasseau demanded an "end to [China’s] massive internment in camps, and to invite the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights" to monitor the situation.

The US further demanded the release of political activists including Wang Quanzhang, Ilham Tohti and Huang Qi.

Human Rights Watch said China had continuously attempted to undermine UN efforts to protect rights. They have had officials photograph and film activists on UN premises as well as banning Chinese activists from travelling to the UN, violating international law.

Around 1000 Tibetan and Uighur protesters gathered outside the Palais in Geneva as the debate took place on Tuesday. 

“STOP China ethnic cleansing of Uighurs” and “Tibet dying, China lies," protestors shouted.