IPAC Newsletter 19th March 2021

report published by the Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development called for supply chain reform and sanctions on Chinese officials in light of human rights abuses against Uyghurs. IPAC members Garnett Genuis MP and Heather McPherson were among the co-authors of the report.

IPAC members John McKay MP, Kenny Chiu MP, Tom Kmiec MP, Heather McPherson MP, Senator Leo Housakos and Senator Thanh Hai Ngo were among signatories to an open letter calling for calling for the Canadian government to improve its lifeboat scheme for Hong Kongers fleeing persecution.

The Czech Chamber of Deputies Foreign Affairs Committee declared the Chinese government’s treatment of Uyghur Muslims “inhumane”, in a resolution led by IPAC co-chair Jan Lipavský MP. 

IPAC hosted a briefing for Parliamentarians from Czechia, Poland, Lithuania, Slovakia and Romania on China’s growing influence in Central and Eastern Europe. Exiled Hong Kong activist Nathan Law and Miriam Lexmann MEP addressed IPAC members in a discussion chaired by Sen. Pavel Fischer and Jan Lipavský MP. 

European Parliament
EU ambassadors have reportedly agreed to a new package of sanctions on four Chinese government officials and one entity over human rights violations targeting the minority Uyghur Muslim population.

This would represent a major victory for IPAC MEPs and EU member state parliamentarians who have called for these moves in repeated parliamentary statements and resolutions. 

Calls for political leaders to not attend the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics were led by IPAC co-chair Margarete Bause MdB, who warned against political leaders unwittingly serving as “welcome accessories for Beijing’s propaganda”, speaking to the Süddeutsche Zeitung.

IPAC co-chair Sen. Lucio Malan led questioning of Carlo Pettinato, Head of Investment Policy at the European Commission DG Trade, on the EU-China CAI investment deal at a Senate hearing. Sen. Malan led criticism of the access given to state censored Chinese media to the EU, while foreign media is severely restricted in China. 

IPAC co-chairs Rep. Shiori Yamao and Rep. Gen Nakatani led the Japan Parliamentary Alliance on China in a statement condemning the Chinese government’s dismantling of Hong Kong’s electoral process, renewing calls for safe harbour to be given to those fleeing persecution.

United Kingdom
business select committee report led by IPAC member Nus Ghani MP urged the UK government to adopt penalties to compel businesses to ensure Uyghur forced labour is not used in their supply chains, declaring existing modern slavery legislation not fit for purpose. 

The revised ‘genocide amendment’ to the UK Trade Bill will return to the House of Commons, after receiving overwhelming cross-party support in the Lords. If passed, the amendment would allow a Parliamentary Judicial Committee to make preliminary genocide determinations.  The UK Government has whipped against the amendment, with many rebels expected to join with the opposition in support of the amendment