Adviser to the World Uyghur Congress and co-founder of Hong Kong Watch, Benedict Rogers, has called for Magnitsky sanctions on the Chinese leadership and other entities saying that human rights are “under severe assault in China since the Tiananmen massacre”.
At a video conference hosted by Brussels Press Club on Monday under the theme ‘China’s continuing human rights violations: is it time to impose “Magnitsky” sanctions?’, Rogers said, “I want China to be free, I want the people of China to have their human rights reinstated, but it is the regime of the Chinese Communist Party that is the problem.”
The Magnitsky sanctions are modeled after the US Magnitsky Act. It was passed in 2012 in memory of Russian lawyer and tax advisor, Sergei Magnitsky, who died while being in Russian detention in 2009 after being tortured and denied medical treatment.
Rogers said that the human rights abuse in Xinjiang and Hong Kong justifies the demand for Magnitsky sanctions on China.
“I absolutely agree that this has all the indicators of a Genocide, and indeed has been recognised as a Genocide by the United States, by the Canadian parliament, by the Dutch parliament. The issues of the Uyghurs and the situation in Hong Kong in and of themselves should be enough to justify Magnitsky sanctions and an entire re-evaluation of our relationship (with China) … Human rights are under the most severe assault in China since the Tiananmen massacre, and in some respects since the Cultural Revolution,” he said.
During the conference, Sir Iain Duncan Smith, former leader of the British Conservative Party and Secretary of State, informed that the members of the House of Commons are in discussion to link any future trade agreements of the UK with severe human rights abuse in China.
Finnish Member of Parliament (MEP) Alviina Alametsa also urged the European Union (EU) and the United Nations (UN) to put a stop to the ongoing human rights abuse in China.
She said: “China commits crimes against humanity, crimes against international law and human rights, and we cannot stay silent. I believe that the EU and the UN must do everything in their power to end this situation and to stop these violations.”
“Sadly the pandemic has been used by the Chinese government to impose the national security law and crackdown on the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong,” she highlighted while mentioning a possible boycott of the upcoming 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.