News Daily Spot: Kerry criticized NGO law and restrictions on religious freedom in China

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Kerry criticized NGO law and restrictions on religious freedom in China

US Secretary of State John Kerry in Beijing on Tuesday criticized a new law that will restrict the activities of foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs), in a ceremony in the presence of Chinese government officials.

"I conveyed to the State Councilor Yang Jiechi our concern about the recently adopted law on the management of activities of foreign NGOs," Kerry said, with Yang, in closing the "8th Strategic and Economic Dialogue" between the two powers.

Kerry also alluded to "international concerns about growing restrictions on religious freedoms and expression" in China. He was alluding to the numerous incidents between the authorities and religious communities in the country, and the wave of repression against Chinese journalists and lawyers.

China's new law on NGOs, adopted almost unanimously in April by the Chinese parliament - controlled by the comunista-- Party gives police extended powers of these organizations, and prohibits them recruit members or collect funds in the country.

At least a thousand foreign NGOs working in China, from charitable organizations to environmental groups, through university structures.

Three special rapporteurs of the UN human rights considered "extremely broad and ambiguous provisions" of the law "can be used as tools to silence any divergent opinion or point of view in the country".

Beijing said he was "firmly opposed" to this statement, which he considered "a flagrant interference in the judicial sovereignty and internal affairs of China."

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