Debate between CCHRC and Amnesty International on China’s influence on global human rights discourse

Increasingly, due to its growing economic weight and political power, China is becoming an important player in the international human rights system. It has already been successful in turning the countries of the Global South into a united bloc, as is exemplified by the adoption of the so-called ‘Win-Win-resolution by the Human Rights Council over the objections of some Western countries. The withdraw by the US from the Human Rights Council further enhances China’s role. 

What does China’s increasing role mean for the international human rights system? Will it be a rule taker or a rule maker? Critics argue that China itself currently is not living up to its human rights obligations, so they are afraid that China’s growing weight will water down and weaken the system. Are they right? In its China Strategy, the Dutch Government claims that China at the international level is calling into question the universality of human rights. Is that a correct interpretation? NGO’s mainly rely on the tactic of ‘naming and shaming’ to ensure that China upholds its human rights obligations. Is this strategy working, or are there other, more effective means to ensure that China sticks to its engagements? How should the international community interact with China to ensure that the international human rights system remains intact?

CCHRC’s Tom Zwart and Eduard Nazarsky, the Director of the Dutch branch of Amnesty International will debate about this theme on June 6, 2019.

Location: 3D Debate Centre, VU Campus square, corner W&N building

Time: 5:30-17:00 uur (Doors open at 15:00)


2019 China Europe Human Rights Seminar – Vienna

The annual gathering of European and Chinese scholars and others with a genuine interest in the cultural embeddedness of the implementation of human rights will take place in Vienna this year, June 19 – 22.

The program will be roughly as follows:

  • Wednesday 19 June: arrival in Vienna, in the evening a working dinner of the “Cross Cultural Human Rights Centre” will take place to discuss opportunities to bring China and Europe closer together in the area of human rights;
  • Thursday 20 June: during the morning a meeting will take place of the Cross-Cultural Human Rights Centre participants working at European universities to discuss human rights in Europe;
  • Friday 21 June: China Europe Human Rights Seminar;
  • Saturday 22 June: return travel

Sub-themes for the Seminar are:

  1. Universality and Particularity of Human Rights;
  2. Human Rights Significance of the Community with a Shared Future for Human Beings;
  3. History and Evolution of Human Rights Values;
  4. Human Rights Practice in China since the Founding of the People’s Republic of China and Its Global Significance.

The events are invitation only.