GENEVA, Oct. 22, 2013 -- China has implemented or has been carrying out recommendations received four years ago during the first UN human rights review and has basically fulfilled its commitment, a senior Chinese diplomat said Tuesday.
Wu Hailong, head of the Chinese delegation, said in his opening statement at the second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) on China by the Human Rights Council, that the notion of promoting and safeguarding human rights has long been incorporated into China's Constitution, its national economic and social development plans and the Constitution of the Communist Party of China.
Since economy is the foundation for promoting and protecting human rights, over the past four years, China continued to make development its top priority, said Wu, who is also the special envoy of China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Chinese government has taken concrete steps to improve people's well-being and share the fruits of reform and development among the people, and protect and promote people's right to life, education, health and housing, according to Wu.
Wu said that China has put in place a socialist legal system with Chinese features, which provides strong legal support to realize human rights to the full.
The political rights of Chinese citizens have been better upheld and the Chinese government has strengthened the judicial system and set enhanced human rights protection as an important target, he said.
The Chinese government has also taken concrete actions in protecting people's freedom of speech and freedom of religious belief in accordance with law, according to Wu.
Wu also told the council about China's work in protection of the human rights of special groups, including orphans, children with disabilities, HIV/AIDS-affected children, children from poor families and vagrant children, people with disabilities, senior citizens and minority ethnic groups.
He said that the Chinese government takes an active part in international exchanges and cooperation on human rights.
China has joined 26 international conventions on human rights and worked hard to implement them, he said.
Wu said that there is always room for improvement in the field of human rights.
"We are soberly aware that China still faces many difficulties and challenges in promoting and protecting human rights," Wu said.
He named such challenges as that unbalanced, uncoordinated and unsustainable development remains an acute problem, basic medical and health service cannot fully meet people's needs, and resources and environment are laying growing restraints on economic development.
He said that with the realization of the Chinese dream, the human rights cause in China will witness even greater achievements.
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