CHRD & 70 Organisations Urge Canada, U.K., to Join Global Magnitsky Sanctions Against Chinese Officials Responsible for Violating the Rights of Uyghurs

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August 18, 2020

Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, MP

Minister of Foreign Affairs

Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A6

Honorable Steven Mnuchin

Secretary of the Treasury

Department of the Treasury

1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

Washington, DC 20220

Honorable Michael Pompeo

Secretary of State

Department of State

Washington, D.C. 20520

Rt Hon Dominic Raab, MP

Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

King Charles St, Whitehall, Westminster London SW1A 2AH

Dear Minister Champagne, Secretary Mnuchin, Secretary Pompeo, and Foreign Secretary Raab,

We, the 71 undersigned organizations dedicated to the promotion of universal human rights and/or the fight against corruption, welcome the United Kingdom’s successful promulgation of its Global Human Rights Sanctions Regulations and initial tranche of 49 sanctions designations, as well as the United States’ recent actions under the Global Magnitsky sanctions program to designate senior Chinese leaders and entities responsible for egregious human rights violations in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (Uyghur Region) against Uyghurs and other Turkic and Muslim-majority peoples.

We write you in the context of these developments to urge greater coordination between your governments as one critical element in your broader strategies to promote respect for human rights and fight corruption globally, and to request that the British and Canadian governments use their respective targeted human rights sanctions programs to mirror recent actions undertaken by the US government.

The US government’s recent sanctions designations of Uyghur Region Chinese Communist Party (CCP) secretary Chen Quanguo, other senior CCP officials, the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (XPSB), and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC) reflect actions long called for by the Uyghur activist community and many human rights organizations. These designations mark a significant step forward in terms of holding accountable the perpetrators of atrocities against the Uyghurs and other Turkic and Muslim-majority peoples.

We note, however, that the impact and perceived legitimacy of such sanctions will be bolstered if coordinated and implemented in conjunction with the governments of the United Kingdom and Canada. We encourage your governments to prioritize multilateralization of targeted human rights and anti-corruption sanctions, which among other benefits will have the manifest impact of expanding the reach of travel restrictions and asset freezes. This, in turn, will increase the costs for each sanctioned individual and entity to continue committing human rights abuses or acts of corruption, in the Uyghur Region or elsewhere, and serve as a more effective deterrent.

In this instance, we urge the US government to share the information it has used to inform its Uyghur Region-related Global Magnitsky designations with counterparts in Canada and the United Kingdom. Likewise, we urge the governments of Canada and the United Kingdom to act upon such information by announcing their own targeted sanctions against the listed perpetrators under the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act and the Global Human Rights Sanctions Regulations, respectively.

More broadly, we encourage each of your ministries to formalize and routinize information-sharing concerning targeted sanctions relating to human rights abuses and corruption. By collaborating across borders, the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom can make it much harder for perpetrators to evade sanctions enforcement.

Globalizing and harmonizing “Magnitsky-like” targeted sanctions programs represents a significant step towards ending impunity for many of the world’s worst crimes. We applaud each of your governments for the steps you are taking in this direction, and urge further integration as you move forward in this important work.


  1. Americans for Kashmir
  2. Association for Advancement of Freedom of Religion or Belief in Vietnam
  3. Avaaz
  4. The Arrested Lawyers Initiative
  5. Bitter Winter
  6. Boat People SOS
  7. Buddhist Solidarity Association
  8. Campaign for Uyghurs
  9. Center for the Study of Democracy
  10. Central and Eastern European Council in Canada
  11. China Aid Association
  12. Chinese Human Rights Defenders (CHRD)
  13. Council for Global Equality
  14. CSW
  15. The Church of Almighty God
  16. Church of Scientology National Affairs Office
  17. Citizen Power Initiatives for China
  18. Coalition for Integrity
  19. Coalition to Abolish Modern Day Slavery in Asia (CAMSA)
  20. Committee for Religious Freedom in Vietnam
  21. Crude Accountability
  22. Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong.
  23. Freedom House
  24. Freedom Now
  25. Free Russia Foundation
  26. Free Uyghur Student Coalition
  27. Friends of Angola
  28. Global Alliance Against Communist Propaganda & Disinformation
  29. Global Magnitsky Justice Movement (Bill Browder)
  30. Heartland Initiative
  31. Humanity United
  32. Human Rights First
  33. Human Rights Movement “Bir Duino-Kyrgyzstan”
  34. Human Rights Watch
  35. Human Rights Foundation
  36. The Human Trafficking Legal Center
  37. International Christian Concern
  38. International Lawyers Project
  39. International Organization to Preserve Human Rights
  40. International Partnership for Human Rights (IPHR)
  41. Italian Federation for Human Rights (FIDU)
  42. Jewish World Watch
  43. Joint Baltic American National Committee
  44. Jubilee Campaign USA
  45. Jubilee Campaign NL
  46. Junior Sacerdotal Council of the Cao Dai Religion
  47. Justice for All
  48. Justice for All Canada
  49. Kleptocracy Initiative
  50. Montagnards Stand for Justice
  51. Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
  52. No Business With Genocide
  53. Norwegian Uyghur Committee
  54. PEN America
  55. Project Expedite Justice
  56. Project Hong Kong
  58. Safeguard Defenders
  60. Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International (TASSC)
  61. T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights
  62. Truth Hounds
  63. USC Gould International Human Rights Clinic
  64. US Pinoys for Good Governance
  65. United Macedonian Diaspora
  66. Uyghur Human Rights Project (UHRP)
  67. Uyghur Rally
  68. Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation
  69. Vietnamese Women for Human Rights
  70. WatchDog.MD Community (Republic of Moldova)
  71. World Uyghur Congress

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