Nation's global initiatives praised at rights forum

2023-06-16 09:42:16China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

Participants talk at the Forum on Global Human Rights Governance in Beijing on Thursday. (CHEN ZEBING/CHINA DAILY)

Global initiatives for development, security and civilization proposed by China have created an alternative structure to the one that is now leading to global conflict, said experts at a forum on human rights.

The two-day Forum on Global Human Rights Governance kicked off on Wednesday in Beijing, with the theme of "Equality, Cooperation and Development: The 30th Anniversary of the Vienna Declaration and Program of Action and Global Human Rights Governance".

International speakers at the forum hailed China's proposals, which have proven effective through practice, and praised the proposals for pointing out ways and paths for the global response to security, development, governance and other issues.

China's diplomacy over the last decade has begun to exert its influence and philosophy in the global arena. The creation of the Belt and Road Initiative 10 years ago, the Global Development Initiative proposed in 2021, and the Global Security Initiative proposed in the same year all reinvigorated a new sense of development, said William Jones, Washington Bureau Chief for the Executive Intelligence Review.

"China's willingness to share its development with other developing countries also provided an alternative to the neglect by the Western nations of their development needs," he said.

Yet, the reaction of the West to these proposals has been anything but welcoming. They targeted China in a vicious attempt to limit its development and to discredit its growing influence, and are also trying to build a case that China is not democratic and that it is conducting human rights abuses against its minorities, he said.

"China's role in protecting the human rights of its citizenry is deserving of much praise. More importantly, China's call for making development a human right has been well-received by the world community," he said, adding that China's success in poverty alleviation puts into question the whole viability of "the Western way of life".

Crispin Kaheru, a member of the Uganda Human Rights Commission, said that the Global Security Initiative is a first-hand practical example of China leading efforts to de-weaponize human rights, facilitate the right of the people around the world to choose ways to develop their type of democracy as well as social and political systems that are aligned to their national conditions.

The GSI is an action-oriented architecture. It has in part exposed the inadequacies of the current normative framework of the international human rights system and it has practically demonstrated that global peace is possible through peaceful means, he said.

The GSI must integrate with both the conventional and new spaces quickly and peacefully to rebalance global political and security architecture from competition to cooperation, he added.

Ong Tee Keat, chairman of the Belt &Road Initiative Caucus for the Asia-Pacific, said that the primordial human rights of existence for the entire humanity are effectively at stake because the global challenges are mounting menacingly. Besides, the weaponization of human rights has never ceased and the Cold War-minded major powers are still beefing up war machines.

"The timely rollout of China's GSI fills the void of a viable global security architecture that addresses both conventional and non-conventional security concerns," he said.

The initiative laid the foundation of a new security architecture upon which geopolitical tensions could be eased through reconciliation and mediation, as long as the involved parties come to their senses with reasonableness, devoid of external instigation and meddling, he said.

Against the backdrop of the deteriorated international security situation and intensified regional conflicts, and the human dignity being trampled on, China's GSI calls for the defense of the common values of peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom for all mankind, said Liu Qing, vice-president of China Institute of International Studies.

The GSI aims to eliminate the root causes of international conflicts and improve international security governance, he said.


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