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China lashes out at US human rights violations
Updated: 2005-03-03 17:13

China accused the United States of serious human rights violations and told Washington to clean up its own act before "wantonly trampling on the sovereignty of other countries".

In its annual Human Rights Record of the United States , China hit out at the "atrocity" of US troops in Iraq and criticised the Bush administration for failing to deal with poverty, racial discrimination and crime at home.

It was published just days after the US released its own annual human rights report, which accused China of muting dissent, suppressing religious rights and restricting freedom of speech.

Unidentified U.S. soldiers leashing dogs surround a frightened, naked Iraqi detainee in this photo obtained by The New Yorker said to be taken in December 2003, at the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad, Iraq. [AP]
"Despite tons of problems in its own human rights, the United States continues to stick to its belligerent stance, wantonly trampling on the sovereignty of other countries," the Chinese report said.

"The United States should reflect on its erroneous behavior on human rights and take its own human rights problems seriously instead of indulging itself in publishing the 'human rights country report' to censure other countries unreasonably."

The Chinese report focused on US abuse of Iraqi prisoners.

"In 2004 the atrocity of US troops abusing Iraqi POWs exposed the dark side of human rights performance of the United States," it said, adding that the US "frequently commits wanton slaughters during external invasions and military attacks".

"A survey on Iraqi civilian deaths, based on the natural death rate before the war, estimates that the US-led invasion might have led to 100,000 more deaths in the country, with most victims being women and children."

Domstically, Americans were "threatened by rampant violent crimes and severe infringement of civil rights by law enforcement departments".

"Police violence and infringement of human rights by law enforcement agencies also constitute a serious problem," the report said.

It highlighted the widely publicised case of Chinese citizen Zhao Yan who was handcuffed and beaten last year while in the United States on a business trip.

Stanley Legan, lawyer of Chinese businesswoman Zhao Yan checks her wounds at his New York office, July 23. The 37-year-old Zhao Yan was beaten by a US border inspector for no reason near the famous Niagara Falls. [Xinhua]
The report also lashed out at the US being a democracy "manipulated by the rich", saying four billion dollars was spent on the presidential election while "poverty, hunger and homelessness haunt the United States".

China also bemoaned the fact that "racial discrimination has been deeply rooted in the United States, permeating into every aspect of society", saying coloured people were generally poorer than whites.

"Racial prejudice is ubiquitous in judicial fields," it said. "The proportion for persons of colored races being sentenced or being imprisoned is notably higher than whites."

The situation of American women and children was also "disturbing".

"The rates of women and children physically or sexually victimized were high," said the report.

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