China’s Secret Rules Stymie Legal System – Christopher Bodeen

In the age of the Internet, China’s states secrets regulations are becoming less and less secretive themselves. Now New York-based Human Rights in China put out a two hundred seventy nine page report on this subject. From AP, via seattlepi.com:

China’s extensive effort to designate and protect state secrets undermines its international commitments and hamstrings its legal system, a human rights group said Monday.

China’s constitution and laws provide for freedom of expression and the right to criticize the government, but those provisions are routinely violated, often by authorities invoking rules governing state secrets, Human Rights in China said in a report.

The network of regulations “undermines both domestic law and (China’s) international legal obligations,” the New York-based group said.

“The internal contradictions and tensions in domestic law provisions, and the failure to consistently implement international norms, also undermine the development of a functioning and coherent rule of law,” said the report, titled “State Secrets: China’s Legal Labyrinth.” [Full Text]

June 11, 2007 7:54 PM
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Categories: Human Rights, Law