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  • 31 Oct, 2024
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Secretary Blinken raises Tibet and Human Rights issues with Chinese FM Wang Yi


United States Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken engaged in a pivotal seven-hour meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Washington D.C. on October 26-27, 2023, where a range of critical issues were discussed. The primary focus of the meeting was on human rights violations in East Turkestan, Tibet, and Hong Kong, as well as individual cases of concern.

Secretary Blinken voiced deep concern regarding the human rights abuses taking place in East Turkestan, Tibet, and Hong Kong. In an official statement released by the U.S. Department of State on October 27, it was noted that "The Secretary raised concerns about PRC human rights violations in east Turkestan, Tibet, and Hong Kong, as well as individual cases of concern."

The meeting between the U.S. and Chinese officials encompassed an extensive discussion on a wide range of bilateral, regional, and global issues. The official statement revealed that both parties stressed the importance of collaborating to address various shared challenges, including climate change, global macroeconomic stability, food security, public health, and counter narcotics. They also underscored the significance of achieving ambitious outcomes at the upcoming COP28 climate conference.

On October 27, the bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) issued a statement emphasizing the expectation that Biden administration officials, when meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, would prioritize discussions on critical human rights issues. This includes raising the cases of Uyghurs, Hong Kongers, Tibetans, and other political prisoners who have been unjustly detained in China.

The letter, co-authored by Representative Christopher Smith and Senator Jeff Merkley, called upon Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken to advocate for the imposition of export controls on technology used by the People’s Republic of China’s Public Security Bureaus and other entities in Tibet. This technology is employed for the collection of biometric data, which is used for political identification and racial profiling.

Furthermore, the letter proposed that the secretaries consider implementing measures such as "Global Magnitsky sanctions" and "visa restrictions" targeting officials in Tibetan areas who are complicit in human rights abuses and those involved in the extensive collection of biometric data, as well as the coercive separation of Tibetan children from their parents. Global Magnitsky sanctions, authorized by the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, enable the U.S. government to impose sanctions on individuals or entities found to be involved in human rights violations.

Edited and collated by Team TRC