tirsdag 9. juli 2019

Activist Hong Kong singer faces down China at UN rights body

Just like her fellow Hong Kong protesters, pop star Denise Ho is standing up to China. Just like them, she seems to have gotten under Beijing’s skin — this time at an international human rights venue. The Cantopop singer used her star power to stand up to China’s economic and political power at the U.N.‘s top human rights body Monday, telling the Human Rights Council that human rights were under attack in Hong Kong and asking whether it would suspend China as a member of the 47-nation body for its abuses.

Ever sensitive to its growing international reputation, China shot back and interrupted Ho twice during her allotted 90-second slot. The chair, Iceland’s ambassador in Geneva Harald Aspelund, gave some gentle reminders, but let her keep talking.

Ho’s comments were some of the sharpest and most varied criticism of China that the council has heard since the United States pulled out last year, partly over Trump administration complaints that too many rights-violating states were among its members. The U.S. had been generally seen as one of the countries least hesitant to stand up to its rising rival at the Geneva-based council.