Press release


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EU-China Summit

Emissions trading, Syria, human rights: EU must not avoid sensitive issues in Beijing


The 14th EU-China summit will take place tomorrow in Beijing. The Greens/EFA believe that there are many points which have to be thoroughly discussed with the Chinese leadership - from emissions trade in air traffic, export restrictions of rare earths, to human rights and Tibet.

Ahead of the EU-China Summit, Reinhard Bütikofer, Vice-President of the Greens/EFA group, said:

"China and the EU have committed to embarking on deeper cooperation and to combining forces to tackle issues of common concern. There have, however, been several occasions when these goals were ignored. One example of the need to live up to obligations and expectations has been the recent WTO ruling regarding some Chinese export restrictions. Ways should be found to address the issues regarding trade in metals and minerals and find opportunities for creating better international resource governance."

"With regard to the mutually recognized need for more effective climate policy, Europe has started moving forward with ETS Aviation. The European Parliament strongly supports that. We expect all international carriers to abide by the rules of this emissions trading scheme, which has been upheld when challenged in the European Court of Justice, until more broadly encompassing international rules have been agreed."

"China as a permanent UNSC member carries great responsibilities. The Responsibility To Protect is one of those. The Chinese government should, therefore, cooperate with the majority of the UNSC and particularly with the Arab League to help stop the brutal war which the Assad regime in Syria is waging against its own people."

Helga Trüpel, Member of the China Delegation of the European Parliament:

"Once again, Commission President José Barroso and EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy should raise the question of the ongoing harrassment of human rights activists in China. It is outrageous that the Chinese security forces have confiscated the computer of Sakharov prize winner Hu Jia and are disabling all his communication links. I expect the EU Commission to strongly criticise these actions and to ask the Chinese government to return Hu Jia his computer. Freedom of information is one of the basic democratic rights.

In view of the increasing incidences of self-immolation of Buddhist nuns and monks, the Chinese government should recognise that its repressive policy in Tibet has failed. In their own interest for maintaining domestic security, the authorities should embark on a policy of recognising Tibet's cultural autonomy."