Commentary

If Clinton's So Concerned For Chen, Where's Her Report On Human Rights In His Country Due Back In February?

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | May 3, 2012 | 11:26 AM EDT

The plight of human rights activist Chen Guangcheng was prominently addressed in the State Department’s 2010 human rights report – but, the 2011 report of China’s abuses is nowhere to be found more than two months after its due date. But, why?

Chen was prominently mentioned in the Sec. of State Hillary Clinton’s last human rights report on China -- the 2010 report -- which was released by the State Department last year, and covers activities in the year 2009. But, the legally-required 2011 report was due back in February – and it’s still nowhere to be found.

The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 imposes a deadline for State Dept. Sec. Hillary Clinton to submit to Congress by Feb. 25 each year reports on the human rights conditions in China and other countries around the world – so, where is it?

In addition to China’s forced-abortion and sterilization policy, the latest State Dept. report on China’s human rights abuses notes:

  • “An estimated 1.5 million Chinese were detained or imprisoned”
  • “The whereabouts of underground Catholic priests Zhang Li and Zhang Jianlin, from Zhangjiakou, Hebei Province, whom authorities detained in 2008, remained unknown."
  • “[T]he disappearances of hundreds of Uighur men and boys following the July 2009 protests in Urumqi.”
  • “[P]olitical activists, underground religious believers, persons who repeatedly petitioned the government, members of the banned Chinese Democracy Party (CDP), and Falun Gong adherents were among those housed with mentally ill patients in these institutions."
  • [O]fficials used electric shocks, beatings, shackles, and other forms of abuse”

Back in April, a State Department spokesman told CNSNews.com that the department was waiting to release the report at a time when Clinton could personally do so.

With the State Dept. feverishly trying to deal with the Chen situation, she’s not going to find a better time to personally release the report documenting the state of human rights in China.

If Sec. Clinton is actually interested in addressing human rights abuses in China, you’d think she’d comply with the law here in the U.S. and release the report.

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