H.E. Mr. Jozias van Aartsen, Holland's Minister of Foreign Affairs spoke at the 58th Session of the Commission on Human Rights (Geneva, 27th March, 2002). In the speech, he said:
"But the human rights situation in China continues to be a source of great concern to the Netherlands Government. The application of the death penalty has reached an unprecedented level since the start of the "strike hard" campaign. Followers of Christian churches and other religious communities, as well as members of the Falun Gong, continue to be persecuted. The fight against terrorism is used as a pretext to intensify repression of minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet. On the other hand, Chinese society is now more open and engaged with the international community more than ever before. This is underscored by China's successful bid for the Olympic Games. I hope and expect that China will take upon itself the moral obligation that goes with it: to fully respect all human rights."
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