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Dissidents Who Have Suffered for Human Rights in China: A Look Back and A Look Forward

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Congressional-Executive Commission on China

These witnesses will offer advice for the next Administration on human rights priorities (Turkistan Times)
These witnesses will offer advice for the next Administration on human rights priorities (Turkistan Times)

Concrete improvements in human rights and the rule of law in China are directly linked to the security and prosperity of both the American and Chinese people.  Advances in protecting human rights and curbing government violations of universal freedoms are essential components of economic development, mutual prosperity, domestic stability, and the type of trust and confidence necessary to strengthen bilateral and multilateral cooperation on a range of issues that will define the 21st century.

As documented by the 2016 Annual Report of the bipartisan Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), a deteriorating human rights situation in China poses distinct and ongoing challenges to U.S. foreign policy.  

Chinese, Tibetans, and Uyghurs offer unique perspectives on why robust U.S. human rights diplomacy is a critical foreign policy priority.  In advance of Human Rights Day (December 10, 2016), and the sixth anniversary of famed dissident Liu Xiaobo receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, witnesses will offer advice for the next Administration on human rights priorities and lessons learned about how to approach the Chinese government on “sensitive” issues such as the treatment of human rights lawyers and the rule of law, religious and press freedoms, and the protection of ethnic minorities. They will also detail why principled U.S. leadership is important to advance both American interests and the fundamental rights of the Chinese people.   

This hearing will be webcast live here.

Witnesses

Wei Jingsheng: Chairman, Overseas Chinese Democracy Coalition

Rebiya Kadeer: President, the World Uyghur Congress

Chen Guangcheng: Chinese Legal Advocate; Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Catholic University’s Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies

Bob Fu: Founder and President, ChinaAid

Yang Jianli: President, Initiatives for China/Citizen Power for China

Xiaodan Wang: Falun Gong practioner and daughter of former political prisoner Zhiwen Wang

Penpa Tsering: Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama

*******Additional Witnesses May be Added

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