As the Chinese government prepares to issue its second National Human Rights Action Plan (2013-2015), the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy (TCHRD) issued a brief assessment report on China’s first National Human Rights Action Plan (2009-2010) on the sidelines of the 20th Regular Session of the Human Rights Council at the United Nations in Geneva.
The report, titled The Plan That Never Was: Reassessing China’s Assessment Report on NHRAP (2009-2010) looks at some of the claims made by the Chinese government in fulfilling its human rights obligations, particularly in Tibet.
In April 2009, the State Council Information Office of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) issued the NHRAP (2009-2010), which guaranteed human rights in five major sections viz.: Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; Civil and Political Rights; Rights and Interests of Ethnic Minorities, Women, Children, Elderly People and the Disabled; Human Rights Education for the Public; and Performing International Human Rights Duties and Conducting Exchanges and Cooperation in the Field of International Human Rights.
On 14 July 2011, the State Council Information Office of the PRC issued the Assessment Report on the NHRAP (2009-2010), prepared by a group of officially approved experts and scholars. The report called the Chinese government’s performance during the action plan period a success, saying all provisions and guarantees made in the plan were implemented within the two-year time frame.
The TCHRD report reexamines the Chinese government’s assessment report by highlighting cases of arbitrary arrests, illegal detention, torture, disappearances, and other acts of abuse of official power that continue to occur on an endemic scale particularly since the 2008 Tibetan uprising. During the plan period, new official regulations and Party directives continued to restrict Tibetan peoples’ rights to expression, peaceful assembly, movement and religious freedom. Particularly the Fifth Tibet Work Forum in 2010 rearticulated the failed official policy of accelerating development and striking down hard on any expression of deep-rooted Tibetan grievances.
The report was distributed at the United Nations by TCHRD executive director Ms Tsering Tsomo, and assistant director Mr Jampel Monlam.