Participants at the Inaugural Sino-American Dialogue on the Rule of Law and Human Rights
To promote high-level exchange and discussion of law and human rights issues in the United States and China, the National Committee and the China Foundation for Human Rights Development co-organize an annual Sino-American Dialogue on the Rule of Law and Human Rights. Established in December 2009, this Track II dialogue is the first of its kind to be jointly hosted by U.S. and Chinese non-government organizations.
The Dialogue draws in experts from the American and Chinese government, academia, and the legal field who gather to discuss developments in areas of the law that affect human rights. Some of the institutions represented at the dialogue include China’s National People’s Congress, State Council, Supreme People’s Court, Supreme People’s Procuratorate, Ministry of Justice as well as provincial and local bureaus; U.S. federal judiciary, Departments of Commerce and Justice; and defense bars and academia of both countries. These experts bring multiple institutional perspectives to each of the issue areas, which add greater focus and depth to the discussions.
Each of the four iterations of the dialogue has generated significant goodwill, greater mutual understanding and respect among the discussants, and has caused experts from both countries to reflect on their own legal practices and consider alternate approaches to addressing issues in legal reform. Discussants pledge further cooperation and support for each others’ work on rule of law and human rights issues.
The most recent meeting of this Track II dialogue was held in December 3-5, 2012, in Haikou, Hainan Province, and focused on the draft amendments to China’s Criminal Procedure Law that was going into effect on January 1, 2013. Like all prior sessions of the Dialogue, the proceedings are off-the-record.
Earlier sessions of the dialogue were held on September 14-15, 2011, in New York; December 7-8, 2010, in Xiamen, Fujian Province; and December 12-13, 2009, in Nantong, Jiangsu Province. It was agreed that the next round of the Dialogue will be in September 2013 in New York.