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On Ratification of Human Rights Covenants

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Sun Yuxi said the Chinese government will act resolutely in the spirit of the two international covenants it has signed, although they have not yet been ratified.

Sun made the remark in Beijing on January 14, 1999 at a regular press conference, saying that the State Council of China has, in line with China's Constitution and related laws and regulations, submitted a motion to the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress (NPC) for ratification of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

He further stated that the NPC Standing Committee discussed the motion last June, and takes the position that it needs further studies and discussions since the covenant concerns many important aspects of Chinese society.

The NPC Standing Committee also will decide when to ratify the covenant, Sun added.

He pointed out that it is also up to the NPC Standing Committee to decide when to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Chinese government is organizing various ministries, commissions and academic institutions to carry out earnest study of this matter.

Sun stressed that the Chinese side believes that carrying out in-depth studies before participation is a proper attitude, and one that should be adopted by all responsible governments.

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