The following is the text of the letter: (Click here to view the original letter.)
U.S. Secretary of State
Dear Secretary Clinton,
Congratulations on your recent confirmation as Secretary of State. There is no doubt that challenges lie ahead, but we look forward to working together to confront these challenges in the most effective way possible.
We commend you for addressing some of the common challenges facing China and the United States, such as security threats, weakened economies, and environmental concerns, during your recent trip to China. However, these complicated, multi-lateral issues will only be solved when the government and its people work together, with justice and mutual respect. These issues cannot and should not be separated from concerns about human rights and the rule of law. As long as practices of forced abortions, imprisonment of human rights lawyers, and persecution of unregistered churches continue, the people of China will be neither free nor safe.
It is ironic that the Chinese government, while claiming to pursue a harmonious society, simultaneously allows policies which bring harassment on those seeking to follow the law and serve in humanitarian projects. Yet, this is the case for house church Christians and many other religious groups throughout China. They first find their religious freedom denied, then their right to privacy, right to freedom of speech, and right to freedom of association.
The State Department Human Rights Report which was released on February 25th clearly describes a deterioration of human rights conditions in China during 2008. Please make certain that your conversations with the Chinese government are consistent with the findings of this report. We also look forward to an Ambassador in Beijing who will be pro-active and engaged in the promotion of human rights with the highest levels of the Chinese government. Lastly, we express our desire and willingness to work with you and your colleagues at the State Department to ensure continued U.S. involvement and leadership in promoting human rights throughout the world.
Call or write to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging her to address human rights issues in China including the persecution of house church Christians. Click here to send an e-mail.
Send an e-mail to your Congressmen and Senators expressing your concern for human rights in China and ask them to speak out.