Did you miss key foreign policy developments this week? We’ve got you covered. Each week, DipNote recaps the latest U.S. Department of State highlights spanning a wide range of global issues, events, and initiatives in one blog post.
Here are the highlights from This Week at State:
The Department Celebrated the 4th of July
On the 4th of July the Department celebrated Independence Day. Secretary Pompeo had a video message for everyone.
Today, we wish everyone a happy 4th of July. While celebrations may be different this year, we join all Americans in reflecting on the freedoms and values on which this nation was founded 244 years ago. pic.twitter.com/Yw2vaFYeEW
— Department of State (@StateDept) July 4, 2020
— U.S. Embassy Morocco (@USEmbMorocco) July 4, 2020
Happy Independence Day! 🎉🇺🇸 🎉 สุขสันต์วันชาติสหรัฐฯ! pic.twitter.com/Nkx6Nvl483
— U.S. Embassy Bangkok (@USEmbassyBKK) July 4, 2020
The United Kingdom’s Establishment of a Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime
In a July 6 statement, Secretary Pompeo commended the Government of the United Kingdom (UK) in its establishment of a Global Human Rights sanctions regime pursuant to its Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018. The United States commends the UK’s continued global leadership on the promotion and protection of human rights.
CCP’s Orwellian Censorship of Hong Kong
In a July 6 statement, Secretary Pompeo condemned the Chinese Communist Party’s continued destruction of free Hong Kong.
With the ink barely dry on the repressive National Security Law, local authorities – in an Orwellian move – have now established a central government national security office, started removing books critical of the CCP from library shelves, banned political slogans, and are now requiring schools to enforce censorship.
– Secretary Pompeo
Five Years of Injustice Following China’s 709 Crackdown
In a statement, Secretary Pompeo remembered the 709 Crackdown and the subsequent years. On July 9, five years ago the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) launched a nationwide offensive targeting hundreds of defense lawyers and human rights defenders for detention, interrogation, and politically motivated criminal charges. The “709” crackdown, named for the date it began on July 9, 2015, was designed to intimidate a generation of lawyers and activists from representing or assisting anyone the CCP perceives as a threat to its absolute power. It showed the world what it means to govern via “rule by law,” rather than a system based on the rule of law.
The wave of repression that began five years ago in China continues today. We call for justice for lawyers and human rights defenders like Yu Wensheng, who was sentenced to four years in jail for defending victims of the 2015 #709crackdown.
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) July 9, 2020
Allegations of Human Rights Violations and Abuses in the Sahel
In a July 9 statement, Spokesperson Ortagus expressed the U.S. concern surrounding the growing number of allegations of human rights violations and abuses perpetrated by state security forces in the Sahel, including those documented by Human Rights Watch in its July 8 report, as well as those reported by the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
The U.S. is concerned by the July 8 @HRW report alleging additional human rights violations in the Sahel by state security forces. We urge the G5 Sahel governments to follow through on public commitments to investigate & hold those found guilty to account. https://t.co/8X8iC2jwlJ
— Morgan Ortagus (@statedeptspox) July 9, 2020
The United States Imposes Sanctions and Visa Restrictions in Response to the Ongoing Human Rights Violations and Abuses in Xinjiang
On July 9, Secretary Pompeo announced that the United States will not stand idly by as the CCP carries out human rights abuses targeting Uyghurs, ethnic Kazakhs, and members of other minority groups in Xinjiang, to include forced labor, arbitrary mass detention, and forced population control, and attempts to erase their culture and Muslim faith. As a result, the Secretary designated three senior CCP officials under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2020 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, for their involvement in gross violations of human rights: Chen Quanguo, the Party Secretary of the XUAR; Zhu Hailun, Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Political and Legal Committee (XPLC); and Wang Mingshan, the current Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (XPSB). They and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States.
Today, I designated three senior officials of the Chinese Communist Party in Xinjiang for gross violations of human rights, making them and their immediate family members ineligible for entry into the United States.
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) July 9, 2020
Secretary Pompeo Meets with Foreign Leaders
On July 9, Secretary Pompeo conducted a call with His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan.
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Each week, we recap the latest from the U.S. Department of State and cover a wide range of global issues, events, and initiatives. To learn more, go to www.state.gov and follow @SecPompeo, @StateDeptSPOX, @StateDept and Facebook.