China's voting record on country resolutions reflected its hostility towards the Council’s engagement on any situation, except Palestine and other occupied Arab territories, exposing its strong bias and contributing to double standards at the Council.

Voting Record in 2016

2015 Voting Record

2014 Analysis

China rejoined the Human Rights Council in 2014 and continued its hostile and obstructive approach to the Council’s mandate to address country situations. It opposed every country resolution put to a vote under agenda Items 2, 4 and 10, and dissociated itself from the resolution on Eritrea adopted by consensus. China endorsed a March 2014 joint declaration put forward by Saudi Arabia that backed the government crackdown in Egypt, despite the massive rights violations it entailed. At the same time, China supported all resolutions focusing on the human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories (OPT). The contrast between China’s votes on the resolutions on the OPTS and its votes on all other situations raises serious questions about double standards and selectivity in its approach to the Council.

China is one of seven members of the Council that failed to co-sponsor any country- specific resolutions at the Council in 2014. On a positive note, however, in 2014 China supported the convening of the special sessions on the conflict in Gaza in July and on the situation in Iraq in September.

China regularly takes part in country-specific debates of the Council, but generally limits its participation to expressing support for governments under scrutiny. The only statements China has made that are critical of human rights violations address the situation in Palestine. In its only intervention during an Item 4 general debate, China denounced the Council’s politicization and double-standards, as well as the Council’s interference in the human rights situations of other countries. China also denounced the US surveillance program. In several explanations of votes against country resolutions put forward at the Council, China invoked the need for constructive dialogue and cooperation, and focused on the concepts of sovereignty, territorial integrity and non-interference to justify its opposition to country resolutions.

Instead of abstaining on all country resolutions except those on the situation in Palestine, China should commit to fully implementing the Council’s mandate to address and prevent situations of violations, and base its positions on an assessment of the situation on the ground, the needs of victims, and the international obligations of the government concerned.

Voting record in 2014

Support for key joint statements in 2014

2012 Analysis

China rejected all voted country resolutions, including all the resolutions on human rights violations in Syria, Sri Lanka, Iran and Belarus. The only exception was China’s positive vote supporting amendments that would have improved the Libyan resolution in March 2012.China did not join any of the key joint statements made at the Council on country situations.

In contrast, China voted in favor of all the resolutions focusing on the human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories, exposing its double standards.

China was also one of the only five members of the Council that did not co-sponsor any country-specific resolutions in 2012. China participated in almost all country-specific debates, with a strong focus on sovereignty, non-interference in domestic affairs, as well as social stability and economic progress of the concerned state. 

Voting record in 2012

Support for key joint statements in 2012