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The Chinese Communist Party regime has placed the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission on a sanctions list, alongside three other British entities and nine individuals, in response to the United Kingdom’s decision to implement Magnitsky sanctions against four Chinese government officials and one state entity.

The Chair of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee Tom Tugendhat MP, the former leader of the Conservative Party Sir Iain Duncan Smith MP, and Conservative MPs Tim Loughton and Nusrat Ghani, all of whom endorsed the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission’s recent report on human rights in China, The Darkness Deepens: The Crackdown on Human Rights in China 2016-2020, are also on China’s sanctions list, including Conservative MP Neil O’Brien, independent crossbench peer Lord Alton of Liverpool, Labour peer and Director of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, chair of the Uyghur Tribunal Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, academic Joanne Smith Finley, the Uyghur Tribunal itself, the China Research Group and Essex Court Chambers.

According to a statement from the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, “As of today, the individuals concerned and their immediate family members are prohibited from entering the mainland, Hong Kong and Macao of China. Their property in China will be frozen, and Chinese citizens and institutions will be prohibited from doing business with them. China reserves the right to take further measures.”

Commenting on behalf of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, Baroness Hodgson of Abinger CBE, chair of the Commission’s recent China inquiry, said: “Our recent report on China was a reflection of the extensive evidence that we took. It threw up many questions and concerns about the regime’s human rights violations both against its own people and increasing aggression around the world which, pieced together, produced a very disturbing picture. Instead of addressing these concerns, this astonishing decision from Beijing just illustrates that this is not a regime that we can realistically reason with.  Neither would this reaction appear to be consistent with China’s obligations as a member of the UN Human Rights Council. We warmly welcome the decision by the Foreign Secretary earlier this week to impose Magnitsky sanctions against four Chinese government officials and one entity complicit in grave violations of human rights against the Uyghurs. We urge the United Kingdom government to continue to monitor the situation and especially in consideration of its policy on security, defence, development and foreign policy and its categorisation of China.”

Benedict Rogers, Deputy Chair of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, said: “To be sanctioned by this regime, alongside some of our most outstanding colleagues on all sides in both Houses of Parliament, is both a recognition of our work which we receive with pride – a badge of honour – and at the same time a wake-up call illustrating that this regime in China does not play by the usual norms of diplomacy, and is not only a danger to its own people but a threat to the world and the international rules-based order. That is why a wholesale rethink of China policy is needed. Magnitsky sanctions announced this week – which we have long advocated – are a very good and welcome start, but much more is needed to recalibrate our approach to dealing with this repressive regime.”

For a copy of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission’s reports on China visit https://conservativepartyhumanrightscommission.co.uk/

For the full statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in China see https://www.fmprc.gov.cn/mfa_eng/xwfw_665399/s2510_665401/2535_665405/t1864366.shtml

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