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Wednesday, 10 September 2003
Page: 19808

Mr Danby asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs, upon notice, on 20 August 2003:

(1) Is he aware of the case of Rebiya Kadeer, an advocate of women's and minority rights in China.

(2) When was she (a) charged, (b) tried, (c) convicted, and (d) sentenced.

(3) With what was she charged and what was her sentence.

(4) Is she a political prisoner.

(5) Was her trial free and fair.

(6) Is she being held in compliance with her basic human rights.

(7) Has the Government made representations to the Chinese Government about Rebiya Kadeer's case; if so, (a) when, (b) to whom, (c) by whom, and (d) what was the response; if not, why not.

(8) Was Rebiya Kadeer's case discussed at the recent Australia-China Human Rights Dialogue; if so, (a) with whom, (b) by whom, and (c) what was the response; if not, why not.

Mr Downer (Minister for Foreign Affairs) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Yes

(2) Rabiya Kadeer was charged in September 1999; she was tried, convicted and sentenced in March 2000.

(3) She was charged with endangering national security and sentenced to eight years in prison.

(4) The Australian Government believes she may have been detained and held in breach of international human rights standards.

(5) The trial was not open to the public.

(6) (7) and (8) Rabiya Kadeer's name has been included on each of the lists of individual cases we have presented to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at every round of the Human Rights Dialogue since her arrest. The Ministry stated the grounds of her imprisonment and said she was being held in Xinjiang Women's prison, and she was in good health.