Washington/Geneva – As the Chinese government is scrutinized at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva this week, the international community needs to challenge China’s appalling human rights record and prevent it from becoming the new normal, the International Campaign for Tibet said today.

“In its own country, the Chinese government is systematically violating the most basic standards of human rights, and it seeks to weaken those rights in the international discourse. China undermines the work of international rights bodies, denies access, seeks to restrict civil society globally and exports its authoritarian model to countries susceptible to such tendencies,” said Kai Mueller, Head of UN advocacy for ICT and Executive Director of ICT Germany.

“What Tibetans, Uyghurs, Mongols and others experience under Beijing’s rule should be a warning sign for the rest of the world. The international community must push back and speak up for those who suffer from China’s policies. The Universal Period Review at the Human Rights Council in Geneva this week is the perfect opportunity to do so.”

With religious freedom in Tibet practically non-existent and Tibetan cultural heritage under pressure, peaceful protests by Tibetans must be supported unequivocally, ICT said.

“The international community must not fall for Beijing’s misleading development narrative that portrays its top-down and authoritarian approach to economic, social and environmental policies as being in the best interest of the people. Tibetan herders and nomads, hundreds of thousands of whom have been discriminated against, resettled and relocated, suffer from these policies,” Mueller said.

Massive interventions into people’s lives under the guise of environmental protection continue, while Tibet’s mineral and water resources are being exploited recklessly.

“The Chinese government must change its course to create real stability in Tibet. It can do so by addressing the long-standing grievances of the Tibetan people and engaging in a substantial dialogue with the Dalai Lama and his representatives.”

In a joint report submitted for the third Universal Periodic Review of China, FIDH (International Federation for Human Rights) and ICT documented a dramatic deterioration of the human rights situation in Tibet. The joint FIDH-ICT report also offers a set of concrete recommendations that UN member states should make during the third UPR of China, scheduled to be held on Nov. 6, 2018.

Read the report.