New York City, N.Y., Dec 4, 2012 / 10:15 am
The deteriorating human rights situation in China should inspire action on the part of the Chinese government and people, as well as the international community, said pro-life advocate Chen Guangcheng.
“Unfortunately, the human rights situation in China is in fact getting worse,” the blind activist warned.
“This has to garner more attention from the world,” he said. “And the United States, in particular, as a beacon of freedom, needs to play a leading role.”
In a video recorded several days before World Human Rights Day on Dec. 10, Chen detailed the human rights abuses that are still regularly occurring in his home country.
“The violence in maintaining China’s ‘one-child policy’ still extensively exists,” he said, speaking in Chinese. “It is a sin, because life is sacred.”
Chen – a self-taught human rights lawyer – made international headlines in April when he escaped from house arrest and was taken in by the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.
He has been blind since his youth, and spent years in prison after angering Chinese government officials by exposing brutal practices such as forced abortions and sterilizations tied to the nation’s one-child policy.
Chen said that he and his family had been beaten and refused medical attention during that time. He agreed to leave the U.S. Embassy only after the Chinese government promised that he would be safe and treated humanely.