China Organ Harvesting Campaigners demand UN Chief Investigates Appointment of Chinese Diplomat to Human Rights role
n independent tribunal based in London has written to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urging him to investigate the appointment of a Chinese official to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
The China Tribunal—chaired by human rights lawyer Sir Geoffrey Nice—claims that diplomat Jiang Duan’s appointment to the UNHRC Consultative Group means the UN is “sleepwalking into complicity” with Chinese human rights abuses, including the suppression of Muslim groups in the far west of the country and alleged human organ harvesting.
The Tribunal declared China a “criminal state” in March, accusing it of approving and helping cover up forced organ harvesting for more than 20 years. The Tribunal interviewed more than 50 witnesses and analyzed written evidence of what it claims is a $1 billion-per-year industry.
China has consistently denied all allegations of forced organ harvesting, though acknowledged in 2005 that it took organs from executed prisoners. Beijing said that practice ended in 2015.
Critics have long maintained that the organ transplant market could not be supported only by executed prisoners, suggesting that the government was harvesting organs from political prisoners and minority groups including practitioners of Falun Gong and the Uighur community in Xinjiang.
Newsweek has contacted the Chinese embassy in Washington, D.C. to request comment on the China Tribunal’s allegations.
China’s totalitarian government has been accused of a wide range of human rights abuses, including the persecution of Muslim minority groups in the far west of the country and suppression of pro-democracy forces in the semi-autonomous region of Hong Kong.
Jiang’s appointment to the UNHRC raised “grave concerns” among the members of the China Tribunal that the world’s “great institutions” are unwilling to confront China with its “extreme human rights abuses,” including organ harvesting.
The Tribunal’s letter to Guterres suggested that alleged “forced organ harvesting killings” are comparable “to the worst atrocities committed in conflicts of the 20th century,” including the Holocaust, the mass killings committed by the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia and the Rwandan genocide.
“The United Nations cannot be unminded of these concerns, lest it be accused of in effect sleepwalking into complicity,” the letter read.