23 NGOs, including RSF, call on EU leaders to place human rights at the core of discussion

Photo: John Thys/AFP

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Paris, France —In light of the EU-China Summit next month in Beijing, 23 international nongovernmental organizations including Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged the E.U. leaders to place human rights at the core of their discussion with China.

The joint letter, addressed to Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, and Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, urged them to make human rights a priority as they will meet with Chinese officials next month at the EU-China summit.

The 23 recognized and influential nongovernmental organizations that signed the letter urge the EU to fulfill its pledge to promote human rights globally and call for the release of emblematic prisoners including Liu Xia, the widow of the late Nobel peace prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, and Swedish publisher Gui Minhai whom the Chinese authorities kidnapped in Thailand two years ago.

Ranked 176th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2018 World Press Freedom Index, China is the world’s biggest prison for journalists and citizen-journalists.

In addition to Reporters Without Borders (RSF), the plea was joined by Amnesty International, Christian Solidarity Worldwide, Committee to Protect Journalists, Covenant Watch, Ensemble Contre la Peine de Mort, Freedom House, Frontline Defenders, Human Rights in China, Human Rights Watch, Initiatives for China/Citizen Power, International Campaign for Tibet, International Federation for Human Rights, International Service for Human Rights, International Tibet Network, Lawyers for Lawyers, Society for Threatened Peoples, Taiwan Association for Human Rights, Tibet Justice Center, Unrepresented Nations & Peoples Organization, Uyghur American Association, Uyghur Human Rights Project, and World Uyghur Congress.