G7 berates China for human rights, demands investigation into origins of COVID-19 – –

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G7 berates China for human rights, demands investigation into origins of COVID-19 – –


China’s re-emergence as the world’s leading power is considered one of the most important geopolitical events of recent times, along with the fall of the Soviet Union.

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Group of Seven leaders on Sunday berated China for human rights in its Xinjiang region, called on Hong Kong to retain a high degree of autonomy, and demanded a full and thorough investigation into the origins of the coronavirus in China. .

After discussing how to develop a unified position on China, the leaders issued a very critical final communiqué that explored the most sensitive issues for China, including Taiwan.

China’s re-emergence as the world’s leading power is considered one of the most important geopolitical events of recent times, with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 that ended the Cold War.

The rise of China has also pissed off the United States: President Joe Biden presents China as the main strategic competitor and pledges to face China’s “economic abuses” and to fight against human rights abuses. human rights.

“We will promote our values, including calling on China to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, especially with regard to Xinjiang and those rights, freedoms and high degree of autonomy for Hong Kong enshrined in the Sino-British joint statement, ”the G7 mentioned.

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The G7 also called for a transparent, expert-led study on the origins of COVID-19, including in China, to be convened by the World Health Organization (WHO).

“We didn’t have access to the labs,” Biden told reporters.

Biden said he was not yet certain if “a bat interfacing with animals and the environment … caused this COVID-19, or if it was an experience that hurt. shot in a laboratory ”.

Before criticism of the G7 emerged, China made clear to G7 leaders that the days when “small” groups of countries decided the fate of the world were long gone.

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The G7 also underlined “the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and encouraged the peaceful settlement of cross-strait issues.”

“We remain gravely concerned about the situation in the East and South China Seas and strongly oppose any unilateral attempt to change the status quo and increase tensions,” they said.

Forced labor

Biden said democracies were in a global competition with “autocratic governments” and that the G7 needed to come up with viable alternatives.

“We are competing, not with China per se, … with autocrats, autocratic governments around the world, over whether or not democracies can compete with them in a rapidly evolving 21st century,” Biden told reporters. .

“As I said myself (to Chinese President) Xi Jinping, I am not looking for conflict. Where we cooperate, we will cooperate; where we don’t agree, I’ll say it frankly, and we’ll respond to actions that are inconsistent.

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The G7, made up of the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Britain, Italy and Canada, has expressed concerns about forced labor in supply chains worldwide, particularly in the agricultural, solar and clothing sectors.

Where we cooperate, we will cooperate; where we disagree, I will say it frankly

US President Joe Biden

Beijing has repeatedly fought back against what it sees as attempts by Western powers to contain China. He says many great powers are still struggling with an outdated imperial mentality after years of China’s humiliation.

UN experts and rights groups estimate that more than a million people, mostly Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities, have been detained in recent years in a vast system of camps in Xinjiang, China. northwest China.

China denies all charges of forced labor or abuse. He initially denied the existence of the camps, but has since said they were vocational training centers designed to counter extremism. At the end of 2019, China declared that all people in the camps were “graduates.”

Additional reporting by Kate Holton, Elizabeth Piper, William James, Michel Rose and Michael Holden.

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