VII. Full Participation in Global Governance of Human Rights
While promoting the development of its own human rights, China upholds the principles of equality and mutual trust, inclusiveness and mutual learning, cooperation and mutual benefits, and common development. It has been active in UN human rights undertakings, fulfills its international human rights obligations, conducts extensive international cooperation on human rights, actively offers Chinese wisdom and solutions for global governance of human rights, and advances through concrete actions the global governance of human rights in a fairer, more rational and inclusive direction.
Engaging in international human rights undertakings. Since resuming its legitimate seat in the UN in 1971, China has sent delegations to every UN General Assembly and UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) conference, and actively joined in the reviews of issues concerning human rights. From 1979 to 1981 China attended the annual meetings of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) as an observer state. In 1981 China was elected a UNCHR member state at the ECOSOC's Management Segment. In 1982, China became an official member state of the UNCHR and has maintained this position ever since. Since the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) was established in 2006, China has been elected as a member state four times. A number of experts recommended by China have served on multilateral human rights organizations or special commissions such as the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the United Nations Committee against Torture, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, and the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
China maintains constructive contacts with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Office (OHCHR), receiving eight visits by high commissioners to China, and inviting many of the OHCHR officials to visit China. In recent years, China has signed two memorandums of understanding on technological cooperation concerning judicial reform, police and human rights, human rights education, and implementation of human rights treaties, and held together with the OHCHR many international conferences on human rights. Since 1994, China has invited ten visits by eight UN representatives and groups: the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, the United Nations Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice, the United Nations Independent Expert on the effects of foreign debt and other related international financial obligations of states on the full enjoyment of all human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural rights, and the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights. China handles letters from the Special Procedures of the UNHRC with due attention, carrying out any necessary investigations and giving timely replies.
Fulfilling obligations in the international instruments on human rights. China has signed 26 international human rights instruments, including six major ones such as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. China abides by the provisions of these international conventions, fulfills all the obligations they prescribe, ensures that its policy formulation, legislation, and any amendments are consistent with these conventions, and submits periodic reports to give feedback on the progress made and any difficulties and problems encountered in implementing these international conventions. China attends all reviews from the treaty bodies on its implementation work. By March 2019, China had submitted 43 implementation reports on 27 occasions to these treaty bodies and received 26 reviews. China has conducted constructive dialogue with the relevant treaty bodies and adopted their suggestions in accordance with the actual conditions in China. China has also received three UNHRC Universal Periodic Review cycles since 2009, and the reports were adopted. China gives due attention and responsible feedback to all suggestions from other countries. Most countries have affirmed China's achievements in this regard and its contribution to international human rights.
Promoting international rules and mechanisms for protecting human rights. China has attended the meetings of the drafting groups of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, and the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, along with other important documents on human rights protection, making a significant contribution to drafting, revising and improving these rules. As one of the major promoters, China participated in drafting the Declaration on the Right to Development, assisting the UNCHR and the UNHRC to organize global discussions on fulfilling the right to development, and is committed to building mechanisms for actualizing the right to development. China actively participates in the formulation of international rules on labor protection and humanitarianism. China was one of the first signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. It actively participated in and effectively promoted the whole multilateral process of climate change issues, and made a positive contribution to the adoption of the Paris Agreement.
China promotes the reform of UN human rights bodies, and played an important role in establishing the UNHRC and making the international human rights mechanism fairer, more objective and transparent. Together with other developing countries, it assists the UNHRC to review human rights issues in a fair, objective, nonselective and general manner. China supports the UNHRC in establishing specialized mechanisms for securing safe drinking water, cultural rights, and the rights of persons with disabilities, in calling for special conferences on food security and the global financial crisis, and in improving the international mechanisms for protecting human rights. China supports the necessary reform of the human rights treaty bodies, promoting dialogue and cooperation between the treaty bodies and signatory states on the basis of mutual respect.
Advocating and conducting international exchanges and cooperation concerning human rights. China prioritizes communication, exchanges, and cooperation with other countries in the field of human rights, and is committed to conducting constructive dialogue and consultations on human rights on the basis of mutual respect, openness, inclusiveness, communication and mutual learning. Since the 1990s, China has established dialogue and consultation mechanisms for human rights protection with more than 20 other countries. China has organized dialogues on human rights with international organizations and Western countries, including the US, the EU, the UK, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Australia, and New Zealand, and held consultations on human rights with Russia, Egypt, South Africa, Brazil, Malaysia, Pakistan, Belarus, Cuba, and the African Union. Since 1996, China has conducted technical cooperation on human rights with Australia and Switzerland. The China Society for Human Rights Studies (CSHRS) and other human rights NGOs in China have organized teams to visit dozens of countries in Asia, North America, South America, Europe, Oceania and Africa, and invited government officials, experts and academics on human rights from various countries to visit China, which has increased mutual understanding and trust. In recent years, China has hosted several international seminars on human rights, including the Informal Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Seminar on Human Rights, the Beijing Forum on Human Rights, the International Seminar on the 30th Anniversary of the Adoption of the UN Declaration on the Right to Development, the South-South Human Rights Forum, the China-Europe Seminar on Human Rights, the International Seminar on Human Rights and Museology, the Sino-American Dialogue on the Rule of Law and Human Rights, and the China-Germany Seminar on Human Rights, which increased China's circle of friends in exchange and cooperation on human rights, and enlarged mutual understanding with other countries in this regard.
Actively leading the reform of international human rights governance. In addition to making progress in its own human rights protection, China also attaches importance to leading the reform of the international human rights governance system. In 1954, together with India and Burma, China proposed the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence: mutual respect for each other's territorial integrity and sovereignty, non-aggression, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and cooperation for mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence, which embodies the acknowledgement and appreciation of national independence, and respect for the decision-making power of independent countries and their peoples. In 1955, encouraged by China, the final Communiqué of the Bandung Conference incorporated "respect for fundamental human rights" as the first point into the 10-point declaration on promotion of world peace and cooperation. The 10-point declaration passed at the Bandung Conference is a derivation and development of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. The Non-Aligned Movement that rose in the 1960s set the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence as its guideline. The declarations adopted at the 1970 and 1974 UN general assemblies accepted the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. Over the six decades that have since passed, the influence of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence has expanded from Asia to the whole world. It has made a historic contribution to building a fairer and more reasonable international political and economic order and establishing a new type of international relations, and serves as a guide for the international governance of human rights.
Over the years, China has kept summing up its own experience in human rights protection, and provided the international community with Chinese wisdom and solutions. In 1993, China pushed for the adoption of the Bangkok Declaration among Asian countries. Holding the vice presidency of the Second World Conference on Human Rights, China participated in drafting the Vienna Declaration and Program of Action. The UNHRC passed the resolution "The Contribution of Development to the Enjoyment of All Human Rights" submitted by China, which introduced the concept of "promoting human rights through development" into international human rights for the first time. The idea of building a global community of shared future proposed by China has elicited a positive international response. The concept has been written into many resolutions of the UNHRC, the United Nations Security Council, and some other UN organizations. It plays an important role in advancing the international governance of human rights in a fairer, more reasonable and inclusive direction.