The following is an excerpt of U.S. State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher's statement at today's daily press briefing:
"The United States will introduce a resolution on China's human rights practices at the 2004 UN Commission on Human Rights meeting in Geneva. The meeting is going on from March 15th to April 23rd.
Our goal in sponsoring this resolution is to encourage China to take positive, concrete steps to meet its international obligations to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms of the Chinese people.
The United States has been disappointed by China's failure to meet its commitments made at the U.S. - China Human Rights Dialogue in December 2002 as well as the failure to follow through on its stated intention to expand cooperation on human rights in 2003.
We're concerned about backsliding on key human rights issues. That has occurred in a variety of areas since that time. We call on other members of the international community, especially members of the Commission on Human Rights, to join us in supporting a resolution. We also call on members of the Commission to vote against the procedural no-action motions that seek to prevent debate on resolutions and, as such, are not consistent with democratic principles such as freedom of speech.
Such no-action motions prevent the only global body charged specifically with human rights from fulfilling its mandate."
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