In a landmark speech delivered today by leading international human rights lawyer, Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, the findings of the China Tribunal were presented to the UK Parliament’s newly formed China Research Group for the first time.
The China Tribunal is an independent people’s tribunal which was established to inquire into forced organ harvesting from, amongst others, prisoners of conscience in China.
China has dismissed claims of forced organ harvesting as politically motivated and untrue and announced that it had stopped removing organs for transplantation from executed prisoners in 2014.
However, in June last year the China Tribunal released its Final Judgement in which it concluded that detainees in China, including followers of the Falun Gong movement, were being killed for organ transplants. The full judgement was released in March.
The presentation of the China Tribunal’s findings today is the latest and highest profile occasion in which China’s organ harvesting has been brought to the attention of one of the world’s leading Governments, as the call for a UK-China relationship reset continues to intensify.
The China Tribunal’s Judgment, which concluded that an elaborate state-backed programme to incarcerate and kill its own citizens in the illicit trade of forced organ harvesting has been taking place for over 20 years, was heard by the China Research Group in a briefing held at 10am today.
Sir Geoffrey was joined by China Tribunal Panel Member, Professor Martin Elliott, and international lawyer and Counsel to the China Tribunal, Hamid Sabi. Sabi first delivered the Judgment to the United Nations Human Rights Council in September last year, declaring that it is now “the legal obligation of United Nations member states to address forced organ harvesting in China.”
The China Tribunal Judgement
The China Research Group, led by Tom Tugendhat MP, was formed in April to examine the UK’s future relationship with China, as well as investigating the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) long-term economic and diplomatic goals following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking in April, Tugendhat, who also chairs the UK’s Foreign Affairs Select Committee, called out “Beijing’s long pattern of information suppression” in addition to stating that China “deliberately falsified the data” relating to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Commenting on the China Tribunal’s Judgment, Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, said: “For years, it may have suited governments and global organisations to turn a blind eye to the crime of forced organ harvesting in China, and instead argue that there was no real evidence of these horrifying crimes.
“Following the China Tribunal’s Judgment, which found, beyond any reasonable doubt that in China, forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience has been practiced for a substantial period of time involving a very substantial number of victims, it is no longer possible to ignore these crimes and it will be for the China Research Group, and the UK Government now to decide whether to investigate and reset their relationship with the CCP.”
Over 50 witnesses testified at the 2019 independent Tribunal and huge volumes of written evidence were analysed. The evidence included research showing the deliberate falsification of China’s public organ donation data, to support a trade in human organs.
China Tribunal Panel Member, Professor Martin Elliott, added: “The China Tribunal’s Judgment now exists in the public eye so that these horrifying crimes are no longer hidden to the world. Our Government, and the medical community which I belong to, simply cannot continue to ignore them.”