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Prague centre for human rights in China to open during Xi’s visit

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Prague, March 28 (CTK) – Czech nongovernmental organisations will open an information centre for democracy and human rights in China in Prague on Tuesday, during the present visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to the Czech Republic, Forum 2000 Foundation spokeswoman Anna Vosalikova told CTK yesterday.
“We would like to inform about the state of civic society in China and how human rights are respected in this territory,” Vosalikova said.
“We consider it highly important to give the (Czech) public an opportunity to come to know the other side (China), with regard to the deepening economic relations,” she said.
Prague has been seeking more pragmatic relations with China and promote trade exchange after a period of human rights promotion, represented by former president Vaclav Havel.
The centre will officially open on March 29 when the key part of Xi’s programme takes place in Prague.
“The visit of the Chinese president is accompanied by a great number of positive and even more negative reactions. We would like to draw attention to the violation of human rights in China,” Vosalikova said.
Some activists damaged Chinese flags that decorated Prague streets in protest against Xi’s visit, she said. This was an extreme act of hatred, she added.
The information centre wants to mediate an open dialogue and provide unbiased information, Vosalikova said.
Forum 2000 wants to develop the legacy of the late Vaclav Havel who was a friend of the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibet. China has been often criticised for the occupation of Tibet. Support for Tibet is a frequent form of protest against Beijing.
Apart from the Forum 2000 Foundation, organisations such as Post Bellum, Amnesty International, National Gallery Prague, Lungta and Potala will take part in the operation of the centre that will organise lectures, round-table discussions and exhibitions.
The centre will provide information on Hong Kong, Taiwan and Tibet, political prisoners, China’s relations with the neighbouring countries and the situation of ethnic and religious minorities.
Vosalikova said the centre is not against cooperation with official Chinese institutions, although this is not its aim.

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