US Slams China, UN Rights Chief, Ahead of Xinjiang Visit

The US State Department said on Friday the United States was “deeply concerned” that China would restrict access on a visit by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, while Bachelet criticized the “silence” in the face of what it called atrocities in China. Western Xinjiang Region.

China’s Foreign Ministry has announced that Bachelet will visit the country from May 23-28, in what will be the first trip there by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights since 2005. Her schedule includes a trip to Xinjiang, where activists say nearly a million Uighur Muslims have visited the country. . in mass detention.

The United States accuses Beijing of genocide there, and Western human rights groups fear the visit will be seen as an endorsement of China’s human rights record.

“We are very concerned about the upcoming visit,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told a news conference, adding that the United States “has no expectation that the People’s Republic of China (PRC) will be granted the necessary access required for a full review.” An unaddressed assessment of the human rights environment in Xinjiang.

Price said the United States had informed China and Bachelet of its concerns, which he said had not responded to repeated calls from the United States and other countries for a report from its staff on the situation in Xinjiang.

“Despite repeated assurances from her office that the report will be released at short notice, it is still not available to us,” Price said.

He said: “The High Commissioner’s continued silence in the face of indisputable evidence of atrocities in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses and abuses across the People’s Republic of China – it is deeply concerning, especially that she and should be…the leading voice for human rights The human”. .

China has denied Western allegations of forced labor and genocide against the Uyghurs and has warned other countries not to interfere in China’s internal affairs by criticizing its actions in Xinjiang.

Human Rights Watch said Friday that it and other rights groups had expressed concerns that the Chinese government “will manipulate the visit as a public relations stunt.”

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