(FiveNation.com)- During President Biden’s virtual face-to-face meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this week, not only did President Biden fail to bring up the COVID pandemic, but he also was very careful to avoid using the word “genocide” when discussing China’s treatment of the Uyghurs.
According to the White House, the President spoke “candidly and straightforwardly” with President Xi about concerns over China’s “practices” in Tibet, Hong Kong, the Xinjiang province, and about human rights “more broadly.”
During the meeting, President Xi said that China is “ready to have dialogues on human rights on the basis of mutual respect.” However, Xi made it clear that Beijing opposes “using human rights” as a way to meddle in “other countries’ internal affairs.”
In short, President Xi is not at all interested in discussing human rights when it comes to China’s human rights violations.
Reports from Human Rights Watch outline the genocidal actions by China against the country’s 12 million Uyghurs. These reports, corroborated by the US State Department, include reports of mass detentions, forced labor, torture, disappearances, forced sterilizations, and other sexual crimes.
Uyghurs, along with other Muslim minority groups, are forced to renounce Islam and memorize Chinese Communist Party propaganda.
Since coming into office, Biden has been criticized for not being harsher in his condemnations of China’s human rights record.
In a February CNN Town Hall, Biden said that he had discussed the Uyghurs with President Xi shortly after taking office. He said that he made it clear that China would face consequences for its human rights violations. Then, inexplicably, the President argued that there are cultural differences between the US and China that “their leaders are expected to follow.”
Biden passing off the treatment of the Uyghurs as simply “cultural differences” immediately prompted blowback. The White House later “clarified” what Biden meant was presidents have to speak out on universal values. Yeah, no. That’s not what he said.
Secretary of State Blinken has said that the administration is considering a ban on Chinese imports made through forced Uyghur labor. Meanwhile, Climate Czar John Kerry is actively campaigning against a proposed House bill that would do just that.