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President Ma calls on China to improve human rights on Tiananmen anniversary

President Ma calls on China to improve human rights on Tiananmen anniversary

Taiwan’s president Ma Ying-jeou Monday joined the international community to call on China to adopt political reforms and new approaches to improve human rights on the 23rd anniversary of Beijing’s violent crackdown against protesters in Tiananmen Square.

“We treasure the cross-strait peaceful development in the past four years,” Ma said in a statement, “but the two sides still remain divided on human rights issue. Such difference will have to be dealt with if the two sides are to have broader interaction.”

China should deal with the historical incident with tolerance, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said in a statement. The MAC said Taiwan has learned from its own historical wounds from the White Terror period and the 228 Incident.

The U.S. state department also called on China to “release all those still serving sentences for their participation in the demonstrations,” and “to provide a full public accounting of those killed, detained or missing.”

“We renew our call for China to protect the universal human rights of all its citizens; release those who have been wrongfully detained, prosecuted, incarcerated, forcibly disappeared, or placed under house arrest; and end the ongoing harassment of human rights activists and their families,” U.S. state department deputy spokesman Mark Toner said in a statement.

The anniversary comes days after blind human rights activist Chen Guangcheng made his first public speech in New York after a dramatic escape from China. He urged China to face the Tiananmen Incident and “stop trying to put a lid on it.”

Updated : 2021-06-17 00:59 GMT+08:00