Even as the United Nations brazenly attacks the United States over alleged “human rights” issues, the UN is facing global criticism for censoring a formal complaint against the Communist Chinese dictatorship’s mass incarceration of ethnic Uighur Muslims in “re-education” camps. The UN is also under fire after it tried to cover up the fact it gave the Chinese regime the names of dissidents who exposed communist crimes.
The latest complaint, filed by over 120 non-governmental organizations from around the world, sought to have UN leaders and agencies condemn Beijing’s “escalating abuse” of the UN’s rules to silence discussion about China’s monstrous human-rights violations. Instead, UN leaders chose to help the regime in China sweep the scandals under the rug.
The current saga began in March when UN Watch chief Hillel Neuer spoke out about the communist regime’s abuses against the Uighur (also spelled Uyghur) population in China’s far-Western Xinjiang province known as East Turkestan. Beijing’s delegates continually interrupted him, pounding and hollering, in an effort to shut down the embarrassing and horrifying testimony.
UN Human Rights Council President Coly Seck of Senegal reportedly told Neuer to “stick to the agenda item,” implying that discussion of barbaric Chinese persecution of an ethnic and religious minority by Beijing did not belong in a forum on “racial discrimination.” Seck later told the Chinese delegation not to disturb the proceedings.
As The New American magazine and other publications have documented extensively, the Chinese dictatorship has interned at least a million Muslims in what authorities refer to as “counter-extremism centers.” Some estimates suggest millions of victims are in the “re-education” camps and programs. And the entire region now resembles a “massive internment camp,” observers say.
It is not just Muslims facing state terror under Beijing’s thumb. Communist China’s rulers also ruthlessly persecute Christians, Falun Gong practitioners, dissidents, parents with more than their allotted number of children, and others. Victims can even have their organs harvested, multiple investigations show. The regime is also engaged in the ongoing cultural genocide of Tibet, among other savage crimes.
Beijing’s behavior — at home and at the UN — goes beyond that of a rogue state. But now, the UN is complicit, too, critics say. When a complaint against the Chinese regime’s recent antics at the UN Human Rights Council was filed by Switzerland-based UN Watch and 125 other UN-accredited NGOs, the dictator-dominated UN literally refused to publish it.
“In our 15 years of submitting written statements to the UN for publication, this is the first time I’ve experienced such blatant, heavy-handed and unapologetic censorship,” Neuer said in a September 6 statement, adding that anti-Semitic drivel submitted by others is published routinely. “In 2005 and 2010, the UN asked us to make certain modest edits to written statements, such as replacing the word ‘regime’ with ‘government’, but we’ve never seen anything like this before.”
“That the UN is now barring the entire publication of major NGO statements while refusing to tell us which word, sentence or even statement is allegedly in breach of a UN rule is simply Kafkaesque,” the UN Watch director continued. “By exercising arbitrary censorship, the UN is also in breach of our right to freedom of expression, as guaranteed under Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.”
Other critics went further. Some accused the UN of aiding and abetting the crimes taking place against Uighurs. Consider that the UN deployed its top “counter-terrorism envoy” to Xinjiang (also known as East Turkestan) in mid-June on an official trip at the request of Beijing, tacitly endorsing the re-education camps as a supposed measure to deal with “extremism” and even “terrorism.”
“It is truly shameful for the UN that its Under Secretary for Counterterrorism Vladimir Voronkov visited East Turkestan and China at a time [when] anywhere from one to three million Uyghurs have been locked up in Chinese concentration camps for more than two years,” World Uyghur Congress President Dolkun Isa explained, calling it an “irrevocable mistake.”
“This official visit, approved by the UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres, allows China to link its crimes against humanity in East Turkestan as a necessary counter-terrorism measure,” said Isa. “Instead of raising and investigating China’s horrific treatment of the Uyghur people, the visit by Voronkov should be seen as the UN not only endorsing China’s repression of the Uyghur people but rather legitimizing and collaborating with the authoritarian government in Beijing to further suppress the Uyghur people.”
Too, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) was exposed in the U.S. Congress helping Communist Chinese “population-control” officials perpetrate forced abortions.
Another major scandal that the UN and Beijing have been trying to sweep under the rug implicates both, yet again. As this magazine reported in early 2017, UN whistleblower Emma Reilly revealed that a senior UN official in the UN “human rights” apparatus had given the Chinese regime the names of dissidents set to testify against it at a UN hearing. A number of those individuals were murdered or disappeared before they could make it. In response, the UN unleashed nasty retaliation — against the whistleblower!
UN Watch and other organizations tried to file a submission urging the UN Human Rights Council to stop doing that. But again, the UN chose not to act on it — even censoring it and preventing its publication and distribution. Apparently UN chief Antonio Guterres, a socialist with numerous ties to mass-murdering communist regimes from his days running the Socialist International, even had the UN judge on Reilly’s case removed at the last moment to keep the scandal from growing. Guterres also recently praised the late mass-murdering Marxist dictator Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe.
The UN refused to specify exactly why it would not follow its own procedures in regards to the complaints filed by NGOs. Instead, it merely claimed that “personal attacks” are not allowed and that the filings must be “relevant” to the work of the UN Human Rights Council. An appeal questioning the censorship was also denied. Instead, a coalition of 50 UN member states just signed a letter praising the Chinese regime for its human-rights record. Seriously.
“It’s bad enough that dictatorships like Iran and Venezuela endorse China’s abuses,” said Neuer from UN Watch after the ordeal. “But when the UN’s own human rights office joins in by censoring speeches and statements about China, and when they put Chinese dissidents and their families at risk by handing over their names to the repressive regime, then we are in a very dangerous place.” He added that Beijing’s “growing and pernicious influence” within the UN was “alarming” and that civil society must be allowed to speak out on behalf of the regime’s victims.
Meanwhile, the UN’s “human rights” machine has been working overtime to attack and demonize the United States. As The New American reported last month, the UN recently blasted Americans states seeking to restrict the murder of unborn babies, claiming abortion is a “human right.” The UN also slammed U.S. border security and immigration policy. And in recent years, top UN officials have attacked the right to keep and bear arms, free speech, due process, and numerous other God-given rights protected under the U.S. Constitution.
But of course, none of this is surprising. The UN has a perverted understanding of “human rights.” Its position is completely and fundamentally incompatible with the American view of inalienable rights endowed by the Creator that is enshrined in America’s founding documents.
In Article 29 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, for instance, the document makes clear that the “rights” can be limited by “law” under virtually any pretext. It also says that the alleged “rights” may “in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.” In short, individuals have no inalienable rights under the UN’s view, only privileges that can be revoked at will.
Indeed, the UN Human Rights Council is literally dominated by dictatorships, with unfree regimes holding the majority of seats. The predecessor organization, the UN Human Rights Committee, was actually led by the late Libyan tyrant Moammar Gadhafi for a time. And current UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet is a known supporter of socialism and even mass-murdering communist dictatorships such as the Castro regime enslaving Cuba. In her younger years, as victims were murdered trying to flee East Germany, she defected to the communist regime enslaving it.
Another victim of UN censorship is Inner City Press, which exposed links between UN boss Guterres and Communist Chinese agents with the China Energy Fund Committee, which was convicted of bribery scandals involving the UN. In response to his hard-hitting original reporting, ICP editor Matthew Lee had his UN press credentials revoked after being roughed up by UN guards.
Other organizations from around the world that joined UN Watch in filing the complaints include the Al-Hasaniya Moroccan Women’s Project, Coordination des Associations et des Particuliers pour la Liberté de Conscience, Millennia 2025 Women & Innovation Foundation, Unspoken Smiles Foundation, Metro Toronto Chinese & Southeast Asian Legal Clinic, Rural Community Development Program, Inter-Action Globale, Service For Peace, Inc., Organisation Conseillère pour le Développement Économique et Social de la Commune des Gonaïves, Project 1948 Foundation, Center for Interethnic Cooperation, Abibimman Foundation, Comité/Club Unesco Universitaire pour la Lutte Contre la Drogue et autres pandémies (CLUCOD), Dominican Leadership Conference, Young Heart Foundation, Build Africa, 21st Century Community Empowerment for Youth and Women Initiative, Murna Foundation, Association for Promotion Sustainable Development, Action Communautaire Femme et Enfant, Mouvement des Jeunes pour le Réveil et le Développement (MJRD), More Trust, Goodness and Mercy Missions Common Initiative Group, Brazilian Harm Reduction and Human Rights Network, Haiti Cholera Research Funding Foundation Inc., Free World Foundation (FWF), Excellent World Foundation LTD/GTE, Maawandoon Inc., Horn of Africa Voluntary Youth Committee (HAVOYOCO), Azerbaijani American Cultural Association, National Women’s Welfare Society, Emperor Gaza International Foundation, World Welfare Association, Community Agenda for Peace, Singapore Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism, Canada’s National Firearms Association, International Blue Crescent Relief and Development Foundation, and many more.
Virtually no establishment media outlet has reported on the latest UN censorship in defense of Beijing. Meanwhile, as this magazine has documented extensively, the mass-murdering Communist Chinese dictatorship continues to gain more and more control over the UN and other architecture of “global governance.” Most recently, it used bribery and threats to seize control of the powerful UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
It is time for serious measures. Clearly, reform is not possible — the UN is doing exactly what it was set up to do. The U.S. government should quit legitimizing and financing the UN’s absurdities through its membership and dues. Anything less is an endorsement of the UN’s escalating extremism, making Americans complicit in it all.
Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, regularly attends UN and international summits. He can be reached at email@example.com or through Liberty Sentinel Media. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook.