15:26 GMT11 April 2021
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    The statement, backed by 70 nations, praised Hong Kong authorities for lifting the special administrative region "out of chaos" and restoring stability following Beijing's National Security Law, a top Chinese spokesperson told the media on Friday.

    Belarus issued a joint statement on Friday at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) backing China's "one country, two systems" approach to Hong Kong, Chinese government spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Friday.

    Wang said the statement stated non-interference was an "important principle" of the UN charter, adding Hong Kong was an "inalienable" part of China.

    The joint statement urged foreign parties to respect China's sovereignty and stop interfering in China's internal affairs, he said, adding over 20 nations directly voiced support for China's position on Hong Kong at the UNHRC session.

    "Once again, the UN Human Rights Council was echoed with calls for justice jointly uttered by a great number of developing countries", the spokesperson said, adding: "We urge the relevant parties to strictly observe international law and basic norms governing international relations, and stop interfering in Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs in any way".

    The comments come after he told told the media in a separate press conference unilateral sanctions from foreign governments were a violation of the United Nations Charter and international law.

    "In disregard of the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and norms governing international law, certain country launched unilateral sanctions against other countries by wantonly citing human rights as an excuse," he said.

    The measures proved unilateral sanctions had "gravely" impacted the global economic order, "severely" undermined national efforts to mobilise resources and were a "continuous, systemic and large-scale violation of human rights", he said.

    Unilateral sanctions had led to food and medicine shortages for "tens of millions of people", endangering vulnerable groups as well as worsening poverty and inequality, among other things, Wang said.

    "China is consistently opposed to unilateral sanctions. We urge the relevant country to heed the just voice of the international community and immediately stop unilaterally imposing coercive measures," he concluded.

    The news follows statements from numerous leaders, including UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab, who called on the UNHRC in February to confront China on alleged human rights abuses in Xinjiang and Hong Kong.

    "No one can ignore the evidence anymore", Raab said at the event, citing a UN report backed by Human Rights Watch and others.

    The UK House of Lords passed an amendment in early February banning UK firms from doing business with countries accused of violations.

    Canadian lawmakers also urged a boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing in early February based on similar allegations.

    The 46th session is taking place in Geneva from 22 February to March 23 and is being heard from UNHRC president Nazhat Shameem Khan, UN General Assembly President, Volkan Bozkir, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, UN Secretary-General António Guterres and Swiss envoy and head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs Ignazio Cassis, among others.

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    Tags:
    press conference, Wang Wenbin, session, Human Rights Watch, human rights, unilateral sanctions, United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), China
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