UN Human Rights Experts Unite to Condemn China Over Expulsions of Tibetans
Edward Wong, NEW YORK TIMES
A half-dozen United Nations experts who investigate human rights abuses have taken the rare step of banding together to condemn China for expulsions of monks and nuns from major religious enclaves in a Tibetan region. In a sharply worded statement, the experts expressed alarm about “severe restrictions of religious freedom” in the area.
Xi’s Core Party Position Cemented in China’s ideological Education
China cemented Communist Party Leader Xi Jinping’s position as the “core” of the Communist Party on Monday, making it part of ideological teaching in colleges and universities as Beijing tightens its hold on education. Political thought and party leadership in China’s places of higher learning should “closely revolve around the Chinese Communist Party with comrade Xi Jinping at the core,” the State Council, China’s Cabinet, said in a document released online. Xi was anointed “core” of the ruling Communist Party last October, placing him among strong men like Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping.
North Korea’s Vice-Foreign Minister to Meet with Top Chinese Diplomats
Jonathan Cheng and Chun Han Wong, WALL STREET JOURNAL
North Korea’s vice-foreign minister flew to Beijing Tuesday for five days of meetings with top Chinese diplomats, in the first known high-level visit between Beijing and Pyongyang’s leadership in nearly a year. The trip, which was made public by China’s Foreign Ministry and North Korea’s state media Tuesday, comes amid heightened tensions between the two traditional allies.
South Korea Suggests North’s Suspension from UN over Airport Killing
South Korea called for “collective measures” to punish North Korea for using chemical weapons to kill the estranged half-brother of its leader Kim Jong-un, as Malaysia said on Tuesday it would charge two women with murder over the airport attack. Speaking at the UN-backed Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva on Tuesday, South Korea’s Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se said the use of chemical weapons was a “wake-up call” and the international community should act—including possibly suspending the isolated North’s seat at the United Nations.
Ukraine Blockade Tensions Rise in Rebel-held East
Ukrainian war veterans and their supporters say they will step up a trade blockade of rebel-held regions of industrial eastern Ukraine. For a month about 100 activists have blocked railway lines to stop Ukraine trading with pro-Russian rebels.The Donetsk region is a key supplier of coal to Ukrainian power stations and heavy industry. The “blockade headquarters” made the new threat on Facebook, and halted talks with Ukraine’s prime minister. The Ukrainian government has warned that the blockade could lead to power cuts in Ukraine. Steel plants in the east have already been forced to suspend production.
Chinese Diplomat Meets Trump, Holds White House Talks
Felicia Schwartz, WALL STREET JOURNAL
China’s top diplomat briefly met President Donald Trump on Monday during a visit to Washington that comes as the two countries move to improve relations roiled by Mr. Trump’s harsh campaign stances toward Beijing. State Councilor Yang Jiechi became the highest-ranking Chinese official to meet with administration officials since Mr. Trump took office. His visit also comes as Mr. Trump charts a course on North Korea policy amid Pyongyang’s increasing provocations.