Today we celebrate the International Human Rights Day.

A day to reaffirm that human rights should not be taken for granted, and to address ongoing human rights violations globally. One day a year we celebrate human rights, while the Chinese government – among others – abuses them daily.

According to Human Rights Watch’s report from 2020, the Chinese government under President Xi Jinping is a threat to the global system for protecting human rights. By ethnic cleansing of the Uyghurs, creating a surveillance state as well as silencing and prosecuting activists, the Chinese government is currently carrying out severe attacks on human rights. All this while remaining a superpower with enormous global influence.

– International trade should comply with and promote human rights – not undermine human dignity. Imported products made with forced labor by the oppressed Uyghur minority should not enter our markets, says chair of Swedish Youth international committee Jenny Vuorenlinna.

To enable this, the EU and national governments must create a better system for tracing and detecting human rights violations in global supply chains, and ban imported goods produced through forced labor by persecuted Muslim minorities in China. The EU must take greater responsibility, but it’s also a private sector matter, where companies and business groups must stop treating with a regime that violates human rights.

– A firm commitment from both public authorities and business actors is needed to ensure that human rights are protected globally. It is time for us to collectively take action in order to protect our international human rights system, says Vuorenlinna.