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China and the United Nations

Since its admission to the United Nations (UN) in 1971, China has been an increasingly active participant in the UN system. China is the sixth largest contributor to the UN regular budget, as well as its peacekeeping operations. In addition, it is one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, and currently holds a seat on the UN Human Rights Council.

Beginning with its ratification of the Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in 1980, China has become a party to six of the nine core human rights treaties of the UN, and is periodically reviewed by the affiliated treaty bodies. As a UN member, China is also required to undergo reviews of its human rights record by the UN Human Rights Council, through its Universal Periodic Review process, and to cooperate with independent human rights experts in the UN system, known collectively as Special Procedures.

The pages listed below provide additional information about China’s engagement with each of these monitoring mechanisms, as well as HRIC’s participation in these processes.

Human Rights Bodies & Procedures of the UN
  • 2018 Universal Periodic Review of China (EN, CH)

Submitted to the Human Rights Council in Advance of the Third Universal Periodic Review of the People’s Republic of China, March 2018

  • Ensuring Safe & Sustainable Civil Society Space Within UN Human Rights Bodies: Challenges & Recommendations (ENCH)

Submitted as input into the report by the High Commissioner on the procedures and practices of civil society involvement with regional and international organizations requested under the Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution 32/31.

OHCHR Resources

Fact Sheets                          

  • Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (No. 6): ENCH
  • Individual Complaint Procedures Under the United Nations Human Rights Treaties (No. 7): EN, CH
  • Civil and Political Rights: The Human Rights Committee (No. 15): ENCH
  • The Human Right to Adequate Housing (No. 21): ENCH
  • The International Convention on Migrant Workers and its Committee (No.24): ENCH
  • Forced Evictions (No. 25): EN, CH
  • The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (No. 26): ENCH
  • Human Rights Defenders: Protecting the Right to Defend Human Rights (No. 29): ENCH
  • The United Nations Human Rights Treaty System  (No. 30): ENCH
  • The Right to Health (No. 31): ENCH
  • Terrorism and Counter-terrorism (No. 32): ENCH
  • Frequently Asked Questions on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (No. 33): ENCH
  • The Right to Water (No. 35): EN, CH                         

Business and Human Rights                       

  • An introduction to the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 2013: EN
  • Frequently Asked Questions about the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights 2014: EN          
  • The Corporate Responsibility to Protect Human Rights: An Interpretive Guide 2012: ENCH
  • UN Guiding Principles on Businsess and Human Rights 2011: ENCH
  • Guide on How to Develop a Human Rights Policy 2011: EN          
  • A Human Rights Management Framework Poster 2010; ENCH                        

Civil Society                               

  • Working with the United Nations Human Rights Programme: A Handbook for Civil Society: ENCH
  • Civil Society Space and the United Nations Human Rights System - A Practical Guide for Civil Society: ENCH
  • How to Follow Up on United Nations Human Rights Recommendations - A Practical Guide for Civil Society: ENCH
  • United Nations Human Rights Council - A Practical Guide for NGO Participants: ENCH
  • Universal Periodic Review - A Practical Guide for Civil Society: ENCH
  • Human Rights Funds, Grants and Fellowships - A Practical Guide for Civil Society: ENCH
Related Resources
  • Opening Statement by Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, at the Human Rights Council 36th session, September 11, 2017: EN
  • Speech by Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, at the 2016 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders Ceremony, Geneva, October 11, 2016: EN
  • Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights China page: EN, CH
  • Universal Human Rights Index database of all recommendations made to China: EN
  • China and the International Human Rights System, 2012 report by Chatham House: EN
  • Universal Rights Group website: EN

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