The senators say that the best way for Canada to react to the “behavior tyrannical” China is to impose sanctions on officials of the communist Party in using the law Sergei Magnitsky. The law allows the government to impose financial restrictions and other foreign nationals responsible for or complicit in violations of human rights internationally recognized.
The act also permits the government to freeze assets belonging to foreign nationals, and to prohibit financial transactions-known authors of human rights violations. The law bears the name of the tax advisor of Russian Sergei Magnitsky, who was tortured and died in prison in Moscow after having documented fraud in Russia.
Canada has used the law to punish the authors of violations of human rights from Russia and Venezuela, the preventing use of the canadian banking system.
In November 2018, Canada has sanctioned 17 nationals saudis responsible for or complicit in the torture and death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
“Unfortunately, the behavior tyrannical of the PRC towards hong Kong people, the Uyghurs and other muslim minorities is only the latest in a continuing trend that has become a habit that is extremely dangerous because it perpetuates constantly and without mercy acts horrible and quite inhuman to other groups,” said the senators. say in their letter.
“Now, more than ever, the time has come for the government to firmly defend these values and to take concrete action by imposing sanctions on Magnitsky. ”
Last fall, a leak of internal documents of the chinese government to the international Consortium of investigative journalists (ICIJ) has produced a striking array of concentration camps, the uyghurs, which were built in the Xinjiang region over the past three years.
According to Amnesty International, the muslim minority is regularly subject to surveillance, intrusive government, phone calls bullying and even death threats.
A recent report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute has revealed that thousands of muslims were used as forced labour in factories that supply companies such as BMW, Nike, and Huawei, among others.
China’s ambassador to Canada has described these camps – where up to a million muslims of strain are subject to ongoing ideological mandatory under the watchful eye of party officials – of the ” vocational training centres “.
The national people’s Congress, the chinese parliament, controlled by communists, has also announced that he would present a law on national security and the fight against the sedition in Hong Kong. The act would remove the legal system independent of the city and would allow Beijing to bypass the local laws.
The senators argue that the chinese policy in Hong Kong clearly violated its international obligations under the sino-british joint Declaration of 1984, which guaranteed a framework of “one country, two systems” after the transfer of Hong Kong from Britain to China.
“Canada, as a member State of the UN, the international community has an interest and a responsibility to defend the international order based on rules,” write the senators.
The letter adds that the canadian citizens have also been targeted by the “hubris and despotism” of the regime abroad – with the “illegal detention of our brave Canadians” – and the house, where the chinese-Canadians opposed to the communist dictatorship face “harassment and intimidation” Of organizations such as the united Front.
Senator independent Marilou McPhedran is one of the four persons appointed by Trudeau, who signed the letter.
In a speech Tuesday, she said that China had proven to be a bad actor through the creation of concentration camps, uighur, his violent suppression of the demonstrations in Hong Kong, his arrests of observers of human rights and allegations of transplantation forced organ.
“Can we stop for a moment and hear what I’m saying? We are talking about the organs inside the bodies of people taken from force and surgically on prisoners of conscience alive, ” she said, citing research from the court of chinese, by an independent judge. survey based in the United Kingdom.
Trudeau has been reticent to publicly criticize China with Kovrig and Spavor still in jail and facing charges of espionage.
Trudeau said last week that he was “disappointed” by the decision of China to officially acknowledging the two men of spying. He said that Canada would continue to work “behind-the-scenes of a very direct and firm,” to obtain their release.
The deputy prime minister asked by chrystia Freeland said she was “heart-broken and really angry” in the face of this development.
Asked Tuesday at a committee of the Commons if Canada would impose sanctions, the minister of foreign Affairs François-Philippe Champagne has dodged the question by saying: “Canada is at the forefront of human rights in the world. ”
Senator progressive Jim Munson, a former journalist who covered the Tiananmen square demonstrations in 1989, said that he had respect for Trudeau, and the challenges it was facing during these crash sound diplomatic, ” but I think that somewhere along the line, there must be more than simply say that we am disappointed. ”
“We need to stand up to the bully “, said on Tuesday Munson in a speech to the Senate. “If we do not rise, who will defend what is happening in China?
“I know that the government has raised the issue of human rights at every opportunity, but this does not seem to work. China has shown it will listen to neither reason nor its allies. She plays games with the freedoms and the precious lives of people. Beijing must be held responsible for the abuse. ”