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China, on behalf of 26 nations, slams US, West for sanctions, human rights violations

An extremist points a gun during clashes with protesters condemning police brutality and racial injustice, in Portland, Oregon, the US, on August 22, 2020. (Photo by Reuters)

China has censured the United States and its Western allies for violating human rights in a joint statement on behalf of 26 countries during the current session of the United Nations General Assembly.

China’s Ambassador to the UN Zhang Jun further demanded the complete and immediate removal of US-led unilateral sanctions on other countries during the general debate of the General Assembly’s Third Committee on Monday.

“We continue to witness the application of unilateral coercive measures, which are contrary to the purpose and principles of the UN Charter and international law, multilateralism, and the basic norms of international relations,” Zhang said, also pointing to the harsh impact of the coronavirus pandemic on all nations, particularly developing countries.

The Chinese diplomat delivered the statement on behalf of Angola, Antigua, and Barbuda, Belarus, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, China, Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Iran, Laos, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Palestine, Russia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, South Sudan, Sudan, Suriname, Syria, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.

Noting that the response to and the recovery from COVID-19 required global solidarity and international cooperation, he further emphasized that unilateral coercive measures had an undeniable impact on human rights, as they impeded the full realization of social and economic development and hindered the well-being of the population, especially women and children, in the targeted nations.

“This is particularly relevant in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. UN senior officials and the international community have recognized the heavy, negative impact of these measures,” Zhang added, insisting that the inhumane sanctions hampered access to medicines and medical technologies, equipment, and supplies.

Censuring racism, police brutality in US

Zhang further pointed to the persisting racial discrimination and police brutality in the US, highlighted with the police killings of George Floyd and Jacob Blake in recent months.

He said nearly 20 years after the adoption of the Durban Declaration, instances such as the brutal killings of African Americans and other vulnerable people by police officers continued to take place in the US.

Zhang stressed that such cruel treatment of minorities by law enforcement authorities served as a reminder that chronic and deep-rooted racial discrimination, police brutality, and social inequality still existed.

He said the COVID-19 mortality rate was disproportionately higher among minorities — in particular people of African descent — in some countries.

Zhang said the detention of refugees, practiced by Western countries, also constituted racial discrimination.

“We also express our deep concern over the health situation of migrants at immigration detention centers in certain countries that reflects a contemporary form of racial discrimination,” said the senior Chinese diplomat.

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