TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s parliament on Tuesday passed a resolution on the “grave human rights situation” in China and called on Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s government to take action to address the situation, as The Beijing Winter Olympics are just days away.
Japan has already announced that it will not send a government delegation to the Games, following a US-led diplomatic boycott over concerns about the human rights situation in China, although Tokyo avoided explicitly qualifying its decision as such.
Since taking office in October, Kishida has repeatedly said that Japan will not mince words with China if necessary, and in November appointed former defense minister General Nakatani as his assistant for the human rights.
The resolution, passed by the lower house, says the international community has expressed concern over issues including internment and violations of religious freedom in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, Tibet and Hong Kong.
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“Human rights issues cannot be solely national issues, as human rights embody universal values and constitute a matter of legitimate concern for the international community,” the resolution states.
“This chamber strongly recognizes the changes to the status quo, which are symbolized by the grave human rights situation, as a threat to the international community,” he said.
US President Joe Biden signed into law a law in December banning imports from China’s Xinjiang region over concerns about forced labor. Washington has called Beijing’s treatment of the genocide of the Uyghur Muslim minority.
China denies abuses in Xinjiang, a major cotton producer that also supplies much of the world’s materials for solar panels.
The conservative wing of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has called for the resolution to be passed ahead of the opening of the Winter Olympics in Beijing on February 4, despite the government worrying about a potential economic impact , Jiji news agency said.
There have long been differing opinions within the LDP on China’s approach. The more conservative wing of the party is hawkish on China politics and seen as primarily concerned with defense issues. Other party members have lobbied to preserve Japan’s deep economic ties with its neighbor.
The parliamentary resolution called on the Japanese government to work with the international community to resolve the issue.
“The government should collect information to get an overview (…), monitor the grave human rights situation in cooperation with the international community, and implement comprehensive relief measures,” he said. he declared.
The resolution did not directly use the word “China” anywhere in the text, and avoided a phrase such as “human rights violation”, saying instead “human rights situation”, in a wink. possible eye to the closure of bilateral economic relations.
Japan relies on China not only as a manufacturing hub, but also as a market for items ranging from automobiles to construction equipment.
(Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka; Editing by Michael Perry)
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