Human rights in Xi Jinping's China

Taken on November 24, 2014 by thierry ehrmann

The current Chinese leadership is attempting to reshape China’s justice agenda by encouraging ‘rule of law-consciousness’ in public and governmental affairs. The Fourth Plenum of the Eighteenth Party Congress in October 2014 highlights socialist ‘rule of law’ as a touchstone of Xi Jinping’s governance intentions for China in the coming years. However, a number of crackdowns across different sectors of society – from suspected terrorist to pro-transparency advocates and Internet bloggers – raise serious doubts about the party-state’s commitment to the position of human rights in its rule of law push. The three speakers in this panel discussion will address issues concerning the relationship between legal and political reforms and human rights in contemporary China. More specifically, they will focus on issues related to justice reform, the abolition of the system of re-education through labour and the most recent developments in ‘China’s peripheries’ seen from a human rights perspective.


Renewed Trouble in China’s Peripheries: Turmoil in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Tibet and Xinjiang
Nicholas Bequelin is Senior Researcher in the Asia division of Human Rights Watch, based in Hong Kong, and a former Visiting Scholar at the China Law Center, Yale University. He obtained his PhD in History from the School of Advanced Studies in Social Sciences (EHESS), Paris, in 2001, and is a graduate in Chinese from the School of Oriental Languages and Civilizations.

Reform of Administrative Detention Powers: How Much and What Does It Mean?
Sarah Biddulph, The University of Melbourne, Law School
Sarah Biddulph is professor of law and an ARC Future Fellow. Her academic career builds on extensive experience of Chinese-related legal practice obtained whilst working as a lawyer in Australia and in China. Professor Biddulph’s research focuses on the Chinese legal system with an emphasis on legal policy, law making and enforcement as they affect the administration of justice in China.

Xi Jinping’s Authoritarian Rule of Law
Susan Trevaskes, Griffith University and The Australian Centre on China in the World (ANU)
Sue Trevaskes is an Australian Research Council QEII Research Fellow at Griffith University. She is also an Adjunct Director of the Centre for China in the World (CIW) at The Australian National University. Her main research interests are in criminal justice, punishment and courts in China. She is currently examining serious drug crime and the death penalty in China.


Nicholas Bequelin, Sarah Biddulph, Sue Trevaskes

Dates & times

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

2.00pm - 4.00pm


Auditorium, China in the World Building (188), Fellows Lane, ANU

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