Update: China's top legislature warns Canadian politicians not to place party interests above bilateral relations
Published: Feb 23, 2021 04:12 PM

Wang Wenbin, spokesperson of China's Foreign Ministry Photo: VCG

The Foreign Affairs Committee of China's National People's Congress (NPC) on Wednesday expressed strong opposition to the Canadian parliament motion on Xinjiang, which seriously distorts the facts and arbitrarily attacks China's Xinjiang policies, rudely interferes in China's internal affairs, and is a malicious provocation to the Chinese people. 

The NPC remarks came after the Chinese Foreign Ministry and the Chinese Embassy to Canada firmly opposed the Canada's interference in Xinjiang and its calls to remove the 2022 Winter Olympic Games from Beijing, after the Canadian parliament passed a motion that determined policies in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region constituted "genocide."

Xinjiang-related issues are anti-violence, anti-terrorism and anti-extremism. Adopting experiences from other countries, the autonomous region has achieved stability and prosperity with no terrorist incidents in more than four years, Wang said.

The Uygur population increased from 10 million in 2010 to 12.7 million in 2018. The 25 percent increase in the Uygur population is higher than the 14 percent increase of the autonomous region's population as a whole, and way much higher than the 2 percent increase of the Han population there, the spokesperson said.

Some Canadians should abandon their anti-China instinct and see China objectively rather than indulging in ideological confrontation or placing domestic political struggle or party interests above the China-Canada relations, Wang warned. 

Li Haidong, a professor of international relations at China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times on Tuesday that Canada over the past a few years has entered a dead end in its China policy, and one important reason is it has followed the US too closely without taking into consideration its own national interests.

The motion has put Canada's diplomatic autonomy in question, Li noted. 

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and majority of his cabinet were absent for the parliament vote. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau, the only cabinet minister present, abstained "on behalf of the Government of Canada," CBC reported. 

Li also noted that boycotting the Beijing Winter Olympics for political reasons goes against athletes who love sports and want to earn honor for their countries. Canada should not overestimate its capability to spread rumors and advocate the boycott. 

The Chinese Embassy in Canada in a statement released on Tuesday also strongly condemned the Canadian move, which is malicious provocation of 1.4 billion Chinese people. 

The Chinese people stand with their government in denouncing rumors and slander against Xinjiang. If Canada continues such deeds, it will not only risk bilateral relations but also face a backlash from Chinese people, Li said. 

Wang at the Foreign Ministry press conference also pointed out that Canada has always claimed to defend its values, but one of the most important values is to respect facts. Some Canadian politicians have never been to Xinjiang, or even China, but under the guise of human rights, they have been engaging in political manipulation and openly spreading false information and lies. This is precisely a violation of their advertised values.

China has an unwavering determination to defend its national sovereignty, security and development interests. For any actions that jeopardize China's interests, "we will respond firmly," Wang said. 

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