The Chinese government has always been extremely skeptical of the Western definition of human rights. For example, they refuse to implement a democracy, reject the freedom of speech and assembly, prevent citizens from freely moving around the country, controlled the population growth when necessary, etc. But are there any human rights which are officially recognised, implemented and supported the the CCP? What is the official view on the subject?

1 Answer 1


I think the subject is covered pretty well on Wikipedia which provides some insight about human rights implementation in China:

Human rights in China is a highly contested topic, especially for the fundamental human rights periodically reviewed by the United Nations Human Rights Committee, on which the government of the People's Republic of China and various foreign governments and human rights organizations have often disagreed.

According to Chinese Constitution, the most if not all human rights as are ensured (Chapter II):

  • right to vote (18+)
  • freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration
  • freedom of religious belief
  • freedom of person inviolability
  • freedom and privacy
  • right to rest
  • right to material assistance
  • right to receive education
  • women enjoy equal rights with men
  • etc.

So, officially (by law) all these rights are recognized.

Also, it is important to notice that the Chinese Government officially recognizes that human rights cannot be applied in China in the same way as in Western countries due to "political and economical" differences:

The PRC government repeats the often ambiguously and confusingly stated opinion that human rights should encompass what its officials have labelled as 'economic standards of living and measures of health and economic prosperity'. It insists that as economic, cultural and political situations differ substantially between countries, a international definition of human rights literally cannot apply to China.

Rights that seem to have some support

  • religious freedom

Members of the Communist Party are officially required to be atheists,[68] but this rule is not regularly enforced and many party members privately engage in religious activities.

  • political freedom

Legally, all citizens of the People's Republic of China who have reached the age of 18 have the right to vote and stand for election, regardless of ethnicity, race, sex, occupation, family background, religious belief, education, property status, or length of residence, except for persons deprived of political rights according to laws imposed by CPC regulations.

  • sexuality related rights

In 2001, homosexuality was removed from the official list of mental illnesses in China.

"they refuse to implement a democracy"

China is a democracy, although its form, definition and implementation was debatable. According to its Constitution China has a "democratic dictatorship":

People's democratic dictatorship is a phrase incorporated into the Constitution of the People's Republic of China by Mao Zedong, leader the Communist Party of China (CPC). The concept, and form of government, is similar to that of people's democracy, which was implemented in Eastern Europe under the guidance of the Soviet Union.

  • The question I wonder then is what logic does China use to justify the barring of free speech (through the use of extensive censorship of the internet and media, the deployment of state-sponsored propaganda ads and loudspeaker announcements, and hefty penalties for violation of any of these measures) given that it puts it right there in its Constitution, and furthermore nobody within the party seems to protest this? Why don't they just strike that portion altogether and say the opposite, that what speech is to be allowed and not is the sole right of the State to determine at its discretion? Jan 2, 2018 at 9:25
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    I note it says rights should encompass living standards, which suggests that there should be a right given to the needs of life; however then what is the other stuff on there about with free speech and all which has nothing to do with that? Is that just a salve to make it "look good" to the west, as a cynic might say, or what? Or is it there's just so much Corruption the rights can't be implemented because everyone in the government has a corrupt agenda? I find the right to vote puzzling even more because China does not elect its leaders. What is this meant to apply to? What vote? Jan 2, 2018 at 9:27
  • And if just a "salve", what then is the purpose of the Constitution itself, in general? The whole thing just a salve? It seems fairly useless if it can just be totally ignored - heck, not only "can be" but it is actually standard and official (as exemplified by censorship bureaus being made explicit, formal organs of the government) operating procedure all the time, continuously, to not follow it? Jan 2, 2018 at 9:31
  • @The_Sympathizer I would encourage you to ask your question(s) as a question; it may need a little adjustment to be answerable on this site, but it definitely can't be answered as a comment.
    – user9389
    Jan 2, 2018 at 20:51
  • On religious freedom: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_religion_in_China - the Holy See and the Dalai Lama certainly don't believe that there's religious freedom in the PRC. Jan 3, 2018 at 22:49

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