China is the EU’s second-biggest export market behind the United States. China-EU trade is worth, on average, over €1 billion in goods and services every day. The biggest EU exporter to China is Germany (currently struggling to avoid recession) followed by the UK, France, Italy, and the Netherlands.

China has also been increasing its investments in Europe over the past decade. While total Chinese investment in the EU is still relatively small compared to other countries (such as the US), it includes investment in strategically sensitive sectors such as infrastructure; Chinese firms now control 10% of Europe’s port capacity, and Italy’s decision to endorse China’s “Belt and Road” infrastructure project has provoked unease among other EU leaders.

Could sensitivity over economic relations with China be why Europe has been so slow to speak out about the protests in Hong Kong? Beijing can be notoriously prickly over human rights, and countries such as Norway and the United Kingdom have suffered “diplomatic freezes” after upsetting the Chinese government. The EU’s approach to China and human rights has not always been united.

At the same time, there are signs that Europe is willing to take a stand. The EU Commission recently labelled Chinasimultaneously a cooperation partner [and] a systemic rival promoting alternative models of governance”. EU officials have spoken out about mass detention and “re-education” camps in China’s northwestern Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, and to mark the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.

Is Europe too soft on China’s human rights abuses? Or has the EU got the balance right when it comes to cooperating with China, but maintaining diplomatic pressure over issues of human rights? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Studio Incendo

114 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. avatar
    catherine benning

    Is Europe too soft on China’s human rights abuses?

    Here is another question that makes little or no sense.

    First expose the human rights abuses as the EU and us, a Western society, see it. What do you mean by soft? Not a lot of people understand just exactly what China is doing that is more ghastly than other parts of the world we trade with. Hong Kong is a part of China once run in full by the UK. The people there are used to a more Western style of administration which is not communism. It is not easy for them to adjust to a different expectation by their rulers.

    However, the British always knew they would have to return Hong Kong to Chinese rule at the end of the lease they had taken on it. They had a century to make changes to that lease during that time. They did not do so. The UK did inform the people of Hong Kong that the end of the lease was the end of UK rule and that, as a result, they would find many differences in their society. This meant, the Chinese were aware of the impending situation this change in political adjustment would make in their lives. They chose to stay with that prospect. Those who didn’t want to, left for other parts of the world. Just as they did in South Africa when their government was changed to African rule. Are you contemplating change toward that countries dire policies on human rights? It is for the people to make their own moves. Not the EU to take it upon themselves at a whim.

    Secondly, China has a functioning political country of billions. Those people are not willing, or, do not appear to want to be part of the Western style of culture. I think, had they wanted change at the top, a billion people would make moves to bring it about and would get somewhere. Just as the West brought about change from the 1800’s style rule another poster wrote of on this forum.

    What can the EU do? Financially squeeze the Chinese through starvation? War? Trade sanctions? To what end? Where does the EU see this taking the Chinese people? How long and how will they remove the abuses they allude to from the Chinese and at what cost to those people? Add the big question, have you asked permission of the billion Chinese to make these changes for them? And, what are you offering that will enhance their life should you succeed? Asking a Western world of people, living a very different life in a totally different culture, what others should be deciding, is a bit rich, isn’t it? Especially when you have changed the European life and culture into an unwanted cesspit, without once asking the inhabitants in their own sphere, if this is what they want. And, in fact, knowing full well from the onset, had they revealed what it was they intended as change for us all, it would have been soundly rejected. This is not a good place to begin a change bombardment on another part of the world. The failure in the European States to date is so obvious. Europeans are not doing well in their human rights fiasco here, are they?

    What is needed from the EU, is to return our manufacturing, agriculture, fisheries, education, health service, scientific and technological masterpieces to what it once was, as offered to the citizens paying for it right here. And do this before you set your eyes on changing life elsewhere in the world, intending it to be the way you have savaged ours. Let the Chinese sort out their own cultural way of life, just stop using their cheap labour which is promoting the abuses you claim you see there. It is not the EU who should be taking this kind of decision. And why should EU citizens be asked to fund a people who are very capable in their own right, out of their tax contributions, whilst ignoring the Human Rights issues in their own back yard? Please enlighten me.

    • avatar

      I disagree with your opinion wholeheartedly, but from some of your statements I am getting the impression that they mostly come from a place of misunderstanding of the Chinese sociopolitical environment than anything else. Allow me to address this point-by-point and hopefully you’ll feel somewhat more enlightened by the end.

      Firstly, you say that “not a lot of people understand just exactly what China is doing that is more ghastly than other parts of the world we trade with.” China is currently ethnically cleansing the entire Xinjiang region of millions of Uyghurs, putting them in “re-education camps,” destroying their neighborhoods, and virtually erasing their culture. This is not a secret, and it’s been very well reported, but there is yet to be a significant action taken by either the West or the Muslim countries. If you have time, I suggest watching “Behind the Walls” (1).

      Secondly, China is not a “functioning political country of billions.” China is an illiberal regime that functions for the members of the Communist Party and those who are loyal to it, and that number is far from a billion. Chinese rule is very repressive, a people have tried to “make moves to bring it about and get somewhere.” That is how Tiananmen happened. For someone who appears to be arguing against Eurocentrism, you are making some very Eurocentric assumptions there.

      Furthermore, you ask what the EU can do. Personally, I think the EU can and should do a whole lot more than it currently is doing. Economic sanctions would not “financially squeeze the Chinese through starvation,” since a) hundreds of millions of Chinese are already starving and the vast majority of people wouldn’t even be affected by the trade with the EU, as over 40% still live in rural areas, and b) the EU is not that important of a trade partner for China, and even the most important out of the EU countries (Germany) doesn’t even make China’s list of top 5 trading partners. Chinese people wouldn’t be that negatively affected if there were a few less Volkswagens on the streets, however, the Party members and those who profit the most out of trade deals might.

      It is concerning that you believe that human rights in Europe are even comparable to those in China, so I will not even go there. The EU certainly has it issues that it needs to address, and needs to do so urgently, but to compare the two is nothing but a sign of ignorance on the topic.

      One of the main missions the EU officials claim to have is to bring about positive changes globally and strengthen the EU’s image of a normative power. The lack of action regarding human rights violations by not only China, but numbers other countries as well, is destroying this goal in its entirety and leaving the EU with very little credibility to use when negotiating with other partners. I find it repulsive that the biggest reaction against China came after the EU’s businesses felt threatened by the BRI and the Chinese growing presence in Italy, Croatia, Serbia and elsewhere. We should absolutely protect our market, but we cannot claim to be a normative power in the world if our actions are dictated by our wallets, and not our morals.

      Currently, all the “efforts” and “diplomatic pressures” aimed at condemning China serve as nothing but an alibi. That is not even the bare minimum the EU should be doing, and it’s only adding to the image of the EU as one big complicated bureaucracy instead of a competent world power.

      I truly, truly believe the EU must begin putting it’s money where it’s mouth is and start acting as a global power, and a global leader that it claims to be. I believe we have the capacity and I know we have the resources, I only hope we have the willingness as well.


    • avatar

      Sudden discovered lots of false information delivered by Mira last year, I have to offer my own opinion and experience even there is a time lapse of over one year. Mira said: “China is currently ethnically cleansing the entire Xinjiang region of millions of Uyghurs, putting them in “re-education camps,” destroying their neighborhoods, and virtually erasing their culture. This is not a secret,” I would like to ask Mira when she/he has been to Xinjiang? I had visited Xinjiang twice in early 2018 and I was deeply attracted by this beautiful and peaceful place with herdsmen and big herds of animals grazing at rich grassland and doing seasonal change of grassland, bring their herds along. Lots of fruits, cotton, tomatoes, chili and lavender fields with people busy harvesting or doing all sorts of works, every house has grown trees to block the wind and sand, from the sky looking down Urumchi, reservoirs, solar panels and large scale wind mills and base stations and optic fibers installing… Urumchi has its first mass transit railway operating since late 2019…. Young people of different ethnicity are beautiful and working with enthusiasm and looking forward to save money to run their own business and for self-development… Xinjiang’s highway are all newly built and with better quality than we have seen in advanced economies of EU and even all over the world. Even during the night time, big highways along the deserts are with lorries and trains busy driving …How can a place doing ethnic cleansing has a robust economy, with so many huge scale construction of infrastructure and people with their home so well protected, with abundant wealth accumulated and cities so beautifully built? Go and have a look by yourself, don’t rely on fake news to survive, otherwise you will become stupid … To remind Mira again, the Uyghur population increase very very much faster than many ethnic minority groups in China. If ethnic cleansing has ever been doing, how can you explain the multi-ethnicity of China for it has 55 ethnic minority groups? How can we explain over 39,000 mosques in China, 25,000 of these are in Xinjiang? Xinjiang has a high density of one mosque per 500 muslims. Where can you find this all over the world in any Islamic states? Fake news make people stupid and lose the ability to distinguish right or wrong…

  2. avatar

    Look at G-7 protest in Bayonne. Protesters are doing exactly what HK rioters are doing, digging bricks from the pavement to attack the police, burning cars, attacking police staff quarters, paralyze the airport by blocking all passengers from taking their planes, cutting part of the traffic light wires leaving the green light for pedestrians and vehicles have no lights, so that they can run over pedestrians…yesterday, they stabbed a police…

  3. avatar

    If airports of France, Germany, UK are being paralyzed for days, French, German and British police are being attacked with weapons, fire, corrosive products, bricks, metal traffic signs, high power laser beams, bows and arrows, umbrellas and knives…. People are forced to “strike”by the mob who blocked all doors of the mass transportation, major routes. British, French and Germany national flags and emblems are being damaged, the parliament or congress are damaged together with all electronic and electrical devices and computers damaged… People obliged to find protection at their home all weekends and rush home after office hours, and watch all terrorists damaging all over HK and attacking the police everywhere in front of the TV… what peaceful force your police of free and democratic states would be using? I am here witnessing everything going on for more than two months in HK.

  4. avatar

    Yes. However, EU better deal with the problems in its own back yard before taking on an argument with China. We are weakened and internally divided, we have a ton of problems that should have a higher priority than human rights in China.

  5. avatar

    Yes especially the UK its one of their ex colonies

  6. avatar

    is tooo soft with Turkey, why ask for China, is too far

  7. avatar

    No, EU politics has been and should stay exactly where it is on this matter. As mentioned below, plenty of internal problems to picking up another fight instigated by US…

  8. avatar

    Look closer to home…the EU (German) craven attitude to Russian abuse of human rights in the pursuit of gas demeans any criticism of others.

    • avatar

      Well said sir.

  9. avatar

    No its China/Hong Kong problem not ours. Keep out and sort out own stuff first

  10. avatar

    Please EU, don’t get more and more enemies, the last one is Boris Johnson…
    It is not the purpose to write something negative about Boris Johnson as media does. EU-enemies are nowadays are Putin, Bolsonaro, Trump, China, AL-Assad and other..,

  11. avatar

    China’s human rights is Europe’s responsibility now? Stay out of it. They can sort it out themselves.

    • avatar

      Rumy, after Brexit the Brits will teach them the real deal because they will have a stronger voice…

    • avatar

      Cãlin, Brits will have a stronger say in what exactly? How to open borders for more Indians?

    • avatar

      Borislav, a stronger voice than you will have when you have been in the eu 10 years and have to sell everything to pay them back double for what you recieved.

    • avatar

      Susan, nahhh with shrinking economy and big multinationals relocating to continental Europe for access to the market, UK or perhaps England will hardly have a voice…

  12. avatar

    Europe is nothing!! It’s been but it’s not. Oppose China?? This is laughing!!

  13. avatar

    “human right abuses” ?
    The right questions should be – “Is EU too soft on propaganda aiming to build up tension between East and West, just so the military industrial complex can sell more weapons?”
    China is doing well to stop extremism. Can Germany or EU say the same?

    • avatar

      George, Have you been watching the news about Hong Kong? And btw, what idea is that of yours on EU wanting the weapons industry to sell more? You have it all wrong wth

    • avatar

      Carlos, seems like you have been watching only “propaganda”.
      What are the “protesters” protesting actually? Do you know?
      Usually when a small group funded by foreign interests are going against the country it’s called treason.
      Why don’t you try the same in California (lets say Russian supported riots), and see want would the response be.

    • avatar

      George, no man, you are off

    • avatar

      Jack, if you have something we can check, and not just propaganda theoretic, show us some evidence.

    • avatar

      Carlos/Jack….ignore the posts from George…..telesur is a propaganda company based in venzuela established during Chavez reign & designed to produce “fake news” and anti US reports on all subjects ….its complete nonsense.

    • avatar

      George, what about the Uigur Muslim minority which the Chinese authorities imprison in camps? Is this propaganda too or is a normal practice to put people in camps in order to be educated about Communism and be less Religious?

    • avatar

      Paul, if you call a video proof, “propaganda”, maybe something is not quite right with your reality.

    • avatar

      George, 2 million people or more in Hong Kong are fighting back in the streets the law that the government is trying to push down their throats that they don’t accept. Go check the laws please. People are not stupid anymore

    • avatar

      Carlos, the law was giving right to China to request extradition, however it has to be approved by HK government on a case basis keeping the power in HK. What is wrong with this law? Care to read where this whole thing started? A couple traveled to Taiwan, guy butchered his girlfriend flies back to HK and no one can touch him there because they have no extradition agreement… that is the kind of things you are supporting?

    • avatar

      Carlos, “Go check the laws” ??? – whose laws? USA’s? … do you think if Russia was orchestrating mobs and rebels in order to destabilize USA it would be seen as “legal”?
      I bet California can use some pro-democracy movements to separate from USA and even maybe join Mexico. ;)
      Let’s leave China to the Chinese.

  14. avatar

    The EU should not interfere in other countries policies.

  15. avatar

    We are soft on China, yes. However remember that we Europeans used to have signs on land colonised in China stating ‘No Chinese, No Dogs’ on the lawns, etc. Europeans treated the Chinese like dirt and they remember it. Also we Europeans flooded China with drugs, which is another sore point in China. Haw about we co-operate on the Silk Road on condition of transparency in projects and help bring China with us instead of attacking them?

  16. avatar

    We over look them in America, why not China

  17. avatar

    What about the human rights of the native Europeans? Wouldn’t that be your first concern?

  18. avatar

    What about human rights in France and the now 1 year long protest repression with its many heavy injuries and the few deads?

  19. avatar

    All our problems are solved. Now let’s fix China

  20. avatar

    We are too soft on commercial trades with China, inside their own country is not my business what they do

  21. avatar

    Every country is with China , (except trump but for economical and political reasons nothing related to human rights ), China is not small country that you can mess with, that why it’s doing whatever it likes, no question asked

  22. avatar

    I think that répression in France is much harder than the one in China. Open your eyes

    • avatar

      Olivier yes you’re right France too is a problem, and still has colonies! But China has a more devastating power to corrupt souls all over the world: money for silence!

    • avatar

      Olivier you are the exact example of too soft. You wouldnt even be able to post this in china. You would be in a concentration camp though. For reeducation.

    • avatar

      Arnout That is not true, been in China and post such comments on Wechat, Facebook and WhatsApp yet i am in no concentration camp. Enough over-exaggerations…

  23. avatar

    Guys, US is smashing civilians, UAE is killing people, but they are allies to EU right?

  24. avatar

    Stefano I don t see the colonies you are talking about.. Arnout maybe but we are not in positions to give lessons

  25. avatar

    Too soft?! What should Europe do? Apply sanctions? :D Come on! If Europe wants to be tough, they(we) should unrecognise the PRC and recognise the Republic of China (Taiwan). That’d be tough, and also will never happen.

  26. avatar

    Yes. Because everything is made in China, but with EU label or under EU patent.

  27. avatar

    The EU is aggressive with the weak – see how Greece was treated – and coward with the powerful – see the smiles of the eurocrats when they meet Iranian officials.

    • avatar

      Why eurocrats cannot smile when they meet Iranian officials? Isn’t this a proper manner of diplomats? What has Iranian people done with Europe? Why eurocrats have to act on behalf of Iranian enemy, the US? Are EU not mixing up interests of the European people with that of the American people? Who is paying for eurocrats?

  28. avatar

    Rioters are using laser lights trying to blind her as they have been using to attack the police.

  29. avatar

    Our Hong Kong people’s human rights are being attacked by rioters organized and sponsored by the America. It is before our local election. This is exactly a replication of the Yellow Vests just before the EU Parliament election. Both are targeting to adversely affect a fair and open election. Is this what you European people call democracy? Democracy is now using by a declining hegemony to disrupt lives and development all over the world so that the America would not be lagging behind too much! So, beware of democracy when it is under the dirty hands.

  30. avatar
    My son was delayed by two days when leaving for France. I was blocked from going to the airport because the rioters had blocked the road. Fortunately, it was early and a Police vehicle just arrived to open the road. I was obliged to leave for the airport more than 5 hours before the departure of the planes. It was just a 45 minutes bus driving time/less than 30 minutes taxi time to the airport from my home. People were evening locked up in a big Shopping Center because the rioters had tied up all exits with plastic strips outside. If someone has ignited a fire, this would cost lives….So, stopping talking whether Europe is too soft on China’s human rights abuse, look at what your key ally has been doing to abuse our human rights of over 7 million people here in Hong Kong first.

  31. avatar

    When Europe ought to be paying attention to your own governance and how to contribute goods to your own people, try not to get yourself infected by the American anti-China virus. As we have seen very clearly that China is using the collective effort of the whole country to save lives in Wuhan but Boris Johnson has almost died of his policy of crowd infection. When 100000 Americans are dying, their president is sending warships to the South China Sea doing nothing and to the Middle East to threaten Iran? Which country treasure more human rights? Who is actually abusing human rights?

  32. avatar

    Why EU has attacked China, which is the only big country and third military power, second largest economy but it has not go to war for decades, while the EU has turned a blind eye to the military superpower US is waging wars in the Middle East and making millions of homeless and killing hundred thousands of soldiers and civilians indiscriminately? Even worse, some of your member states have sent troop to kill these soldiers and civilians in the Middle East with advanced weapons. Do you think EU can look more humane and respectful by killing innocent people of the Middle East with a war-monger country?

  33. avatar

    Human rights? Its a myth, we have 2021.

  34. avatar

    Signing a trade pact with China as it lies about COVID, locks up Uyghurs and cracks down on Hong Kong – not a great look…

    • avatar

      Have you ever been to Xinjiang and really met and talked with an Uyghur? I had been there in two consecutive years one in Spring 2018 and another in Autumn 2019. After more than 70 years of efforts of the Xinjiang Construction and Production Corps, it is now a very modern and beautiful region of China, with beautiful people of a variety of ethnic groups living happily together. At the regional capital city Urumchi, a very modern and beautiful mass transit railway came to operation in 2019. Along the two great deserts of Xinjiang, there are very beautiful and busy highways with trains and vehicles running day and night. Commodities flow from China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to and fro…When you have the opportunity visiting Xinjiang, you would find it unbelievable its like a big size Swiss. Fact checking is important before doing like a parrot repeating information fed by the fake news. Without locking up Wuhan, you people of the West would be dying even more, because the lock up of Wuhan has enabled a rapid control of the epidemic and recovery of the Chinese economy so that we can rapidly produce the urgently required medical equipment and related supports to save life of you people in the West. Without the sacrifice of Wuhan, many more hundred thousands of people would be dying including your medical staff. Without China’s rapid sharing of the research data with the whole world at the first instant, people in the West would not be able to produce vaccines so quickly. All you people in the West would still be queuing for Chinese vaccines and even dying before our vaccines arrive…Finally, it is the normal living of we innocent and peace loving Hong Kong people and our shops, traffic lights, infrastructures… being “cracked down” by rioters and even terrorists, threaten and attacked by tiles dug up from the pavement, petrol bombs and even mater tubing filled with concrete…

  35. avatar

    Yes. Europe isn’t even trying.

    • avatar

      It is better for Europe to try saving lives of people dying in the pandemic. We Chinese people can take care our own human rights!

  36. avatar

    Is Europe too soft on Saudis’ human right abuses?Seems like every time “human rights” comes up in EU, is a blunt excuse for political interference, and it’s never backed up by facts, while when we have clear documented cases, like with Saudi Arabia, EU is “fine with it”!? Why?

  37. avatar

    Europe is too soft on European human rights abuses, let alone anyone else’s.

  38. avatar

    EU has been weak with China on all issues : human rights but also trade technology transfer investment, label copyright.Chinese is now more powerful than EU thanks to you..

    • avatar

      Do not pretend to be innocent or ignorant. Are you trying to say that big multinational enterprises are incapable to calculate the benefit and loss before doing the investment? Without transferring the EU manufacturing industry to China in the 1980s, both EU and the USA were not be able to compete for the world market with Japan. Can you not remember how fierce the West had been fighting trade war with Japan as the US is using against China? Can you not remember how Japan was forced to sign the Plaza Accord which has totally ruined the flying economy of Japan. A great and robotic economy of Japan has lost 3 decades of economic development and many of its big star enterprises became history…

  39. avatar

    Ask the beaten people in France and UK :D

    • avatar

      Николай Милчев Cyprus too

    • avatar

      Romania too

  40. avatar

    The real question is:Is Europe to economically dependent on China to really challenge it in any meaningful way on human right issues?Answer:Yes, it is.

  41. avatar

    Let China live with their own laws and regulations .

  42. avatar

    If Russia is a metric, how harsh we can be on China… I will wait with my laugh

  43. avatar

    Completely isolate China from the West and intervene in their Things in Afrika and se asia

  44. avatar

    It’s time for Europe to wake up and stand like a World power

    • avatar

      A “World Power” would find the facts and make independent and sovereign decision rather than relying on the so-called “intelligence” fed by a party which has conflicting interests with both Europe and China.

    • avatar

      When China has already emerged as the second largest economy, the second/third largest military great power, replacing the US as the largest consumption market, and its patent application is 43% of the world combined, the no. is higher than the sum of the US, Japan and Europe…It is too too late!
      “World Intellectual Property Indicators 2020”

  45. avatar

    Thomas Wade Bernaersthey always can try the Neville Chamberlain tactic XDtbh i see them doing them that faster then showing some theet

  46. avatar

    By checking this Global Report 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer, you would realize that you have been misled by the media. As a rational being, you would question how a government abusing human rights rank this highest ” government trust”:

    My advise is to thinking logically and rationally and to find out the fact rather than listen to fake news and fabricated assumptions. This is how the human civilizations can last. This is the Enlightenment spirit hundreds of years ago. Seeking the truth is the only way to human progress. Nowadays, we can go to the most remote corner of the world, do go and see what is happening in China with your own eyes rather than listen.

  47. avatar

    As the Chinese government has been taking care 1/5 of the world’s population i.e. 14 billion. The whole world has to pray for China to maintain prosper and stable. The Communist Party has been doing a great effort to maintain world peace and stability. If China is ruling with the so-called democracy as the West, you will see a second Balkan Peninsula and Africa with wars, deaths and poverty. It should be very terrifying when it is 1/5 of the world’s population

  48. avatar

    There are so many news report the Americans stormed the US Congress to prevent the Senate from certifying Joe Bidan as the president. Shortly within two or three hours, 4 were dead, in Chinese HK, when rioters had broken into the Legislative Council building, the police had pulled out immediately, which left no one single rioter hurt but the building and everything inside were badly damaged. What I can say is that Europe too soft and submissive to the US hegemony?

  49. avatar

    Why democracy appears to be heading towards decline and failing to contribute goods to its own people? It is because your are putting too much money for publicity and fabricating fake news to smear the competitors and wasting time to divert attention to other countries by fabricating fake news and disseminating false information. Such as the BBC reporter who had ignored the climbing death toll of the British at home but went to the far West of China and fabricate fake news on Xinjiang. How about the rights of the Europeans dying in the Covid-2019? This is a trick to mislead the people and divert attention from government inefficiency and incapability to China. Unfortunately, voters get also this habit and enjoy been misled to pay more attention on how the Chinese government has been governing the Chinese, while have forgotten to look at how their own democratic government is governing their own people. We the Chinese does not like their own government, the 1.4 billion Chinese can easily overthrown the government. Chinese are not stupid and do not know their human rights are being abused. When there are 155 million of outbound Chinese tourists in 2019, why do you think these people are ignorant and do not know their human rights are being abused? When politicians and media start to make fool of the people, the government elected would not be a good and responsible government.

  50. avatar

    yes. Also on the way it is run in general.

  51. avatar

    EU tougher on Beijing? Seriously? What kind of joke is this? Can a kindergarten child be tougher on a college student? It can’t. The European ,,leaders’ should mind their own business.

  52. avatar

    Unless it is understood what all these EU leaders and the peoples of Europe have to do themselves to be taken seriously, there is no use of being tougher or softer. It starts with European countries taking responsibility for their own actions and security. This includes Chinese land grabbing in Romania, the sale of the harbour of Piraeus and Venice, the shares in the Rotterdam harbour and Chinese theft of technology, as well as being able to defend yourself in a military sense. It takes a concerted effort. So, instead of putting out statements of human rights abuses, there should be real action, including import taxes on unfair competition and sanctions against companies that make use of forced labour and unacceptable circumstances for laborers.

    • avatar

      @ Peter, what right have you to criticize the decision of Romania people selling lands to the Chinese? Has Romania any rule not to sell lands to foreigner? Are you not discriminating the Chinese? When Greece was at the brink of economic collapse after the 2008 financial crisis spread from the US Wall Street, what EU had done to save Greece? If Greece has not made such a clever decision to grant a long-term lease of the Piraeus Port to the Chinese, Greece economy would probably not be able to recover so easily. Piraeus Port would not jump to the largest port of Mediterranean and Europe’s 4th largest container handling port in 2020. In Q1 2021, Greece has a GDP growth of more than 3% and it is forecast to be more than 5% at Q4. China can build its own space lab alone, built its Baidou alone, spacecraft landed the other side of the moon, etc. Which EU country has these technology? How can China steals any technology other country does not have? This is nonsense. Have you ever witnessed any abuse of human rights and force labour in China apart from the fabricated story of a BBC reporter who has now escaped to Taiwan? Have you no knowledge that the two British Princes are trying to sue BBC for it had deceived Princess Diana for an interview?

  53. avatar

    Don t be hypocrite… You sign trade agreement with China which are so in favor of China then just shut up…

    • avatar

      @Olivier: It should be you who have to shut up. The US Trade representative and the Secretary of Treasury are pleading to meet senior trade officials of China so as to end the trade war because the tariff is damaging the US economy for it makes commodities more expensive and inflation rising. This is detrimental when economic failed to recover at the midst of the pandemic and a new round of outbreak has already started and the people are unemployed and enterprises are bankrupting. Even worse, the US government has forbidden enterprises to sell the so-called hi-tech products to China, which has also led to the loss of job and income. The US is killing its own economy by cutting trade and economic relationship with China. A trade agreement and the establishment of a free trade zone is for mutual benefit and it is the natural development of the global era with open economy. Stupid politicians want to go against the global force is suicidal. Stupid people want to kill themselves is their freedom but do not sacrifice the people and the country.

  54. avatar

    Those who support signing the investment agreement with China does not mean they are in favour of China. Instead, they are doing their best for the post-COVID 2019 economic recovery, which would be benefiting all EU citizens. The China-EU investment agreement is for the mutual benefit of the Chinese and European as a whole.

  55. avatar

    Europe better check very carefully political refugees you have received from HK. They are in fact criminals and rioters sponsored by countries hostile with China. One day, if these countries are not happy with you government, they would sponsor these people to do riots again for they have been trained already. So, it is better to let them stay in the UK or country sponsored them in the riot. Besides, many of them are actually holding a British Overseas National passport.

  56. avatar

    Boris Johnson is appealing for more Hong Kong rioters/US political proxy to go to the UK and promised to provide welfare support. As British refusal to accept refugees has led to Brexit, this policy to welcome rioters and criminal of the anti-extradition law is contradictory to UK policy. What can I see is that this group of rioters would be useful for Boris Johnson during election campaign and to attack the opposition or the government party one day when his party has lost the election. Besides, this group of rioters can be exported to disrupt EU member states like those “yellow vests” for UK does not belong to the EU family and it is totally relying on the US to survive and maintain its influence in Europe. EU has to study the legal, social and political consequence to open entrance of these British Nationals (Overseas) from Hong Kong. As they are not treated as British national by the UK and China has refused to recognize the BNO passport, which means people holding BNO has no nationality if the UK refuses to be held responsibility on the behaviour of these BNO people once they have left the UK. These people using BNO to enter EU would immediately have no nationality. As many of these people are already arrested and only on bail or not yet arrested only. Most of them cannot master English and with very poor financial condition. Many of them are not able to find a residence and employment. The UK can easily refuse re-entry of these people. In such circumstances, countries allowed the entry of these people, EU would have no country to send back, as China has already refused to recognize the BNO passport holders >>>>

  57. avatar

    Boris Johnson is appealing for more Hong Kong rioters/US political proxy to go to the UK and promised to provide welfare support. As British refusal to accept refugees has led to Brexit, this policy to welcome rioters and criminal of the anti-extradition law is contradictory to UK policy. What can I see is that this group of rioters would be useful for Boris Johnson during election campaign and to attack the opposition or the government party one day when his party has lost the election. Besides, this group of rioters can be exported to disrupt EU member states like those “yellow vests” for UK does not belong to the EU family and it is totally relying on the US to survive and maintain its influence in Europe. EU has to study the legal, social and political consequence to open entrance of these British Nationals (Overseas) from Hong Kong. As they are not treated as British national by the UK and China has refused to recognize the BNO passport, which means people holding BNO has no nationality if the UK refuses to be held responsibility on the behaviour of these BNO people once they have left the UK. These people using BNO to enter EU would immediately have no nationality. As many of these people are already arrested and only on bail or not yet arrested only. Most of them cannot master English and with very poor financial condition. Many of them are not able to find a residence and employment. The UK can easily refuse re-entry of these people. In such circumstances, countries allowed the entry of these people, EU would have no country to send back, as China has already refused to recognize the BNO passport holders >>>>

  58. avatar

    As China’s human rights abuses are just fabrications of the BBC and some traitor Chinese who are exchanging Chinese national benefit with her residence right in Australia, no evidence has ever found to support. Yet, there are hundreds of children’s remains found at many residential schools in Canada. This is not only human rights abuses but genocide. What is the reaction of Europe? When the European Parliament voted to sanction China without any trace of evidence on China’s human rights abuses, what sanction the Europe Parliament has ever been talking about?

  59. avatar

    Regarding European Parliament’s resolution on the crackdown on the democratic opposition in Hong Kong. HK people would be more than happy to send these terrorists to EU for they are your freedom fighters. The HK police had just arrested 9 people age from 15-39. They were found making explosive with TATP for they had been in terrorist activities to plant bombs across the city, Today, 5 more terrorists being arrested today. They are also very young students ready to plant bombs before departing for their overseas study in the UK >>>

  60. avatar

    When political manipulation of populism and anti-China atmosphere accompanied with rumours and fake news spread across Europe, with growing hostility against China, politicians might be able to win votes. However, would a Europe with the majority of the people basing on fake news and rumours prosper? When China has 1/5 of the world’s population and the largest single market with purchasing power top all countries, when Trump was shouting to cut tie with China and now Biden’s Trade Secretary, Financial Secretary and deputy state secretary are trying every way to meet officials, and Secretary of States is also trying every way to arrange a zoom meeting between Biden and Xi Jinping, how does Europe see all these? Is the US any intention to isolate itself from China and cut economic tie with China? When Australia is fighting for the American leadership, the US is eating up quickly Australian market share. How does Europe see this development? Is it really about China’s human rights? When China was using billion tons of cheap T-shirts to exchange for an America Boeing, did the America see any human rights abuses in China?

  61. avatar

    When India broke up Kashmir in mid-2019 by sending additional troops mainly to the Kashmir Valley, and detaining political leaders, the Indian government has cut off the Kashmir people from access to internet. This might probably be a way to prevent leaking of information on the abuses of human rights and arrests in Kashmir. When there are almost 1 million 5G base stations all over China, how can human rights abuse can be concealed? When the US has been using satellites to watch China all the time, why the US cannot take one single photo of the force labour in the cotton fields? So, think logically and rationally and do fact checks. This is the duty of all responsible political leaders and government.

  62. avatar

    Why do you people are focusing on fake news fabricated on human rights abuses in China but turn a blind eye to the “Lighthouse of democracy” is criminalizing poor homeless people? China has no homeless people, this is already the government’s biggest contribution on human right history with a huge population of 1.4 billion people. Any brave human rights and freedom fighter in Europe is brave enough to utter “Europe is too soft on America’s human rights abuses?” Look at the condition of American prisoners in the US, not to say abuses in Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp. Anyone of them has undergone a fair trial? We don’t even know how many are there still under torture. Look at the following report, the EU Court ruled Lithuania was involved in a covert US government detainment and interrogation programme in 2019: Cannot see how decline of Europe can be avoided when people prefer to believe in fake news rather than searching for the fact. By looking at one country, a rising China with hostility, Europe is going to lose the whole world.

  63. avatar

    Normally, hearsay would not be admitted as evidence in court. How come European accused China’s human rights abuses has ever visited China and Hong Kong SAR? As EU Parliament ought to be the power center of Europe, do not abuse your power and damage trust of the European citizens by damaging EU-China relationship. China is the hope for EU’s post-Covid 19 economic recovery. As a matter of fact, Europe has been depending on this world factory of China for commodities and its huge consumption market. While politicians are securing their seat and income in the Parliament with anti-China strategy, they are sacrificing well being of the people. Democracy is everything about the people. Individualism must be submitted to collective goods in a DEMOcracy, politics ought to be submissive to rational order and rules in critical moment when the collective is in danger as we are now in a pandemic and over 5 million people perished. .

  64. avatar

    Europe is too soft on Europe’s human rights abuses.

  65. avatar

    Europe is too soft on imaginary USAn propaganda, economic sabotage, and subversion.
    All media financed by USAn organizations (or any other foreign actors) should be closed and banned.
    Are you one of them? 🤨

  66. avatar

    China is a big spoon for the EU’s mouth.

  67. avatar

    EU is not any better, just other problems that needs to be addressed

  68. avatar

    After the crisis on Polish – Belorus border.. Europe should look in the mirror, realise what all wrong has been done ..and then push China on human rights using methods that does not harm EU businesses. Clearly, there is nothing EU can achieve with sanctions (hardly any country can).

  69. avatar

    Several European countries have strengthen their bilateral relationships with China in the past years. How could that affect EU’s intentions to pressure China to respect human rights in the Western Standards?

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