Sun. May 29th, 2022

Speaking ahead of a debate in the European Parliament today on the outcome of the EU-China Summit, the Socialists and Democrats stressed China’s responsibility as a global actor and called on China to support efforts to end the war in Ukraine by putting pressure on Russia.

Pedro Marques MEP, S&D vice-president for foreign affairs, said:

“We call on China to use its influence on Russia constructively to help end the war in Ukraine. We are disappointed that China has still not taken a clear stance condemning Putin’s brutal invasion of Ukraine. Faced with the shelling of cities, the suffering of civilians and the horrible bloodshed, China should join the international sanctions against Russia – or at least not interfere with them.

“We welcome the mutual agreement to relaunch the Human Rights dialogue and urge both sides to implement it urgently. China must comply with its obligations under national and international law to respect and protect human rights, including those of ethnic and religious groups, and human rights defenders.”

Marek Belka MEP, S&D vice-president for trade, said:

“China is one of our key trading partners and we should use every opportunity to better understand our mutual interests and the red lines that cannot be crossed in our relations. In that sense, Chinese discriminatory trade measures against Lithuania were an unacceptable attack against the EU internal market and the rules-based trading system. The EU’s decision to take the matter to the WTO was the right step as we will not accept any form of bullying against our member states. Our Chinese partners have to understand that our common future should be based on dialogue, not the weaponisation of trade. Nevertheless, the EU must further strengthen its defences against hostile actions from its trading partners.

“China must lift its unjustified sanctions against MEPs before we will enter into any talks on unfreezing the investment agreement, as the S&D Group has explicitly declared in the past.”