China Releases White Paper on Human Rights, Highlighting Internet Freedom

Xinhua announces the release of a government white paper on human rights and Internet freedom:

The Chinese government Sunday released a white paper on human rights in China in 2009, highlighting the role of Internet freedom and the country’s efforts in safeguarding citizens’ legitimate civil and political rights.

“The overall cause of human rights has been promoted in an all-round way,” says the white paper, published by the State Council Information Office under the title “Progress in China’s Human Rights in 2009”.

Chinese netizens’ right to freedom of speech on the Internet was protected and the Internet has become a new channel for the Chinese government to gauge public opinion, and consequently improve its governance, the report reads.

It has become “common practice” for governments at all levels to consult the public via the Internet before formulating some policies, it says.

See also “China Rights Report Cites Improvements, but Also Failings” from the New York Times. The full text of the white paper is here.

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