Xi Jinping holds video conference with French, German leaders amid strained ties with EU
Beijing : Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday held a virtual summit with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel amid strained ties with European Union (EU).
According to Global Times, the leaders of France and Germany expressed their support behind an EU-China investment agreement, which European Parliament voted to freeze the China-EU Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) in May.
They agreed to continue to work together on issues such as climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, and international trade.
This came at an increasingly tense moment for EU-China ties, with growing concerns about human rights violations in China, particularly the persecution of the Uyghur minority in the province of Xinjiang.
Earlier in March, the EU imposed sanctions on China marking the EU's first punitive measures on Beijing since it imposed an arms embargo after the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.
In retaliation to the sanctions, China also introduced sanctions against 10 European Union officials and four European organisations after accusing them of spreading lies and false information about the Xinjiang region.
There is a growing concern in Europe over China's human rights record on issues, including alleged forced labour camps and a crackdown in Hong Kong against anti-government protestors.
Xinjiang is a province in Communist China where an estimated two million Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities have been detained since 2016. They are believed to have been placed in detention centres across Xinjiang.
Many former detainees allege they were subjected to attempted indoctrination, physical abuse and even sterilisation. However, China regularly denies such mistreatment and says the camps provide vocational training. (ANI)