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China campaigns to block UN War Crimes inquiry in Burma

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 27 October 2010 07:13 No Comment]

China has launched a diplomatic campaign to thwart U.S plan to back an international probe into possible war crimes by Burma’s military rulers, Washington Post said in its Tuesday edition. China’s U.N. ambassador, Li Baodong, paid a confidential visit to Ban’s chief of staff, Vijay Nambiar, to make his opposition clear: The U.S. proposal, he said, was dangerous and counterproductive, and should not be allowed to proceed, sources familiar with the exchange told The Post. Not unlike Sri Lanka, according to the paper, Burma’s ruling junta, has detained thousands of political prisoners many of whom have endured torture, inadequate medical care and even death.

The Burmese military has also imposed abuses on ethnic minorities, including the forced relocation of villages, forced labor and systematic human rights abuses, including rape," the Post article said.

"There is a pattern of gross and systematic violation of human rights which has been in place for many years and still continues," the U.N. special rapporteur for human rights in Burma, Tomas Ojea Quintana, wrote in a March report, saying such crimes could amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity. "There is an indication that those human rights violations are the result of a state policy," the paper added quoting Quintana.

"What we are seeing is the Chinese practicing American-style diplomacy and the Americans practicing Asian-style diplomacy," the paper said quoting Tom Malinowski, the Washington-based director of advocacy for Human Rights Watch. "The Chinese are making it clear what they want, and they are using all the leverage at their disposal to get what they want. And the Americans are operating in this hyper-consensual, subtle, indirect way that we associate with Chinese diplomacy."

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