In a new resolution initiated by the Renew Europe Group and adopted by MEPs on 20 May, the European Parliament condemns in the strongest possible terms all attempts by Chinese state and non-state actors to interfere in the democratic life of the European Union and its Member States by spreading disinformation in the public sphere.
The resolution reiterates Renew Europe’s condemnation of the baseless and arbitrary sanctions imposed by the Chinese authorities, calling on the European Council to speak out, take a firm stance and adopt conclusions on the matter.
Moreover, Members of the Parliament express their full solidary with all MEPs, including members of the Subcommittee on Human Rights, individuals and entities affected by Chinese sanctions. The resolution also calls on the European Commission to freeze the EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI).
Hilde Vautmans MEP (Open VLD, BE), Renew Europe Coordinator in the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee and Standing Rapporteur on China, said:
“The EU must make it clear that it will not bow to China's deliberate tactics of pressure, censorship and intimidation to weaken human rights internationally. As long as the Chinese retaliatory sanctions are in place, we must freeze the EU-China CAI. The EU cannot take both the moral high ground and nonetheless go ahead with this deal, while EU entities and elected MEPs and MPs are under sanctions solely for defending human rights.”
ALDE Party Acting Co-President Ilhan Kyuchyuk MEP (MRF, BG), who was directly targeted by recent Chinese sanctions, added:
“The European Union made the right decision to impose sanctions on four Chinese individuals, but Beijing’s answer was completely disproportionate. Sanctioning Members of the European Parliament only proved that EU action was the right thing to do and we should continue to support all minority ethnic groups in China. Therefore, we have to insist on strong and enforceable human rights clauses in the EU-China CAI, which will allow us to protect human rights without undermining economic partnership and bilateral agreements.”
Photo credit: Jan Van de Vel, European Parliament 2021.
Photo credit: Laure Dieffembacq, European Parliament 2021.