The State Council, the Chinese Cabinet, has issued a new white paper on Human Rights.
The details from CRI's Xie Zhao.
The white paper, titled "Progress in China's Human Rights in 2013," says the Chinese government has effectively safeguarded its citizens' right to life and health, personal liberty, personal dignity and other rights of the individual.
The new White Paper also outlines the developments made last year.
Li Yunlong is a human rights researcher with CPC Party School.
"People's livelihoods have improved significantly. Basic public services in both urban and rural settings have been better safeguarded. At the same time, the establishment of the social security system, including better nursing and medical treatment facilities, have also made a lot of progress. China became home to the world's largest social safety last year."
On top of the improvements in the social security system, the White Paper says a lot of achievements have been made toward protecting people's individual freedoms.
The report notes the former "reeducation through labor system" or laojiao, has been abolished.
It also says advancements have been made toward better protecting women and children.
The report also says special attention is being paid to the protection of the rights of people with mental disabilities.
Measures to prevent and rectifying unjust, false or erroneous criminal charges have also been been further strengthened.
Zhao Zhengqun, deputy director of the Human Rights Research Center at Nankai University, says more advancements have been made in the judicial system.
"2013 is the first time authorities have come up with an agenda for improving people's rights in the judicial system. Under the changes, the government has reiterated that China respects and safeguards people's rights. At the same time, advancements have also been made in government transparency when it comes to information. These changes allow people better access to information, and give people more involvement in the system."
Li Yunlong says the new White Paper also highlights the work that has been done before last year when it comes to human rights, in particular the right to democracy and free speech, known here in China as the "two rights."
"For years, western countries have criticized the two rights here in China. The new report notes China has made significant progress in protecting these two rights. China has been involved in the reform and opening-up process for more than 30 years. The Chinese government and all walks of life are becoming more confident when it comes to the two rights. China is adopting a direct and objective attitude toward these rights. China has completed social democracy with Chinese characteristics, and China's free speech rights are developing, and its freedom of speech is expanding."
The report also says the Internet has "dramatically" expanded the space for freedom of speech, saying the Internet has become one of the most important channels for the public to express opinions.
The report does note China is still a large developing country and more needs to be done to establish higher standards for the protection of human rights.
The new White Paper on Human Rights is the 11th since the government began releasing reports on human rights in 1991.
For CRI, this is Xie Zhao.
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Progress Made in Protecting Ethnic Minorities' Rights