Republicans accuse John Kerry of lobbying against Uyghur forced labor ban as US and China reach climate deal – Community News
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Republicans accuse John Kerry of lobbying against Uyghur forced labor ban as US and China reach climate deal

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Republicans have targeted Presidential Special Envoy for Climate John Kerry after the US and China entered into an agreement on Wednesday to tackle climate change, accusing him of turning a blind eye to human rights abuses.

“It doesn’t get any worse than John Kerry,” former US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told Fox News. “He is willing to accept Chinese slave labor to promote his radical climate agenda. What happened to defending human rights?”

US Special Envoy for Climate Change, John Kerry, speaks during a joint China-US statement on a statement to promote climate action in the 2020s at the COP26 Climate Change Conference at the SEC on November 10, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.

US Special Envoy for Climate Change, John Kerry, speaks during a joint China-US statement on a statement to promote climate action in the 2020s at the COP26 Climate Change Conference at the SEC on November 10, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.
(Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

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Haley’s comments come just one day after the US and China agreed to work together to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, an important step as both countries are responsible for about 40% of the world’s annual carbon footprint.

Under the agreement, the US and China would share technology and policy developments to reduce emissions in line with the goals set in the 2015 Paris climate agreement.

But Kerry frowned when a reporter asked if he was talking about the issue of Chinese forced labor used in developing technologies, such as solar panel production.

Former GOP Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations in the Trump administration, addresses the Republican Jewish Coalition's annual leadership meeting on Nov. 6, 2021 in Las Vegas

Former GOP Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations in the Trump administration, addresses the Republican Jewish Coalition’s annual leadership meeting on Nov. 6, 2021 in Las Vegas
(Fox news)

The climate envoy said US concerns about forced labor have been “spoken out” to Chinese officials, but added: “That’s not my way here.”

“My job is to be the climate man and stay focused on trying to move the climate agenda forward,” Kerry said.

KERRY CRITICAL ANSWER TO QUESTION ABOUT Forced Labor IN CHINA

President Biden has made combating climate change a top priority of his presidency, but last month he also said defending human rights is “the centerpiece” of his administration’s foreign policy agenda.

A State Department spokesman defended Kerry’s position, saying: “Secretary Kerry has a 37-year record as a senator and secretary of state who champions human rights and democracy.

“As Secretary Kerry has said from the outset, the United States and China have mutual interests in solving the climate crisis while there is still time, even if we fundamentally disagree on other critical issues,” the spokesperson added.

China's special climate envoy, Xie Zhenhua, speaks during a joint China-US statement on a statement promoting climate action in the 2020s at the SEC on Nov. 10, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland.  (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

China’s special climate envoy, Xie Zhenhua, speaks during a joint China-US statement on a statement promoting climate action in the 2020s at the SEC on Nov. 10, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)
(Getty)

It is not the first time the climate envoy has been accused of ignoring known human rights violations.

Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio accused Kerry of “actively working against” the Uyghur Forced Labor Act, a bipartisan law that would block all imports of goods made with Uyghur forced labor.

The bill, introduced by Rubio and Senator Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., passed in the Senate in July but has sat in the House ever since.

“The Biden administration and some Democrats are so desperate for a climate deal with the Chinese Communist Party that they are willing to ignore the regime’s use of slave labor,” Rubio said in an op-ed for Fox News.

“This is not a partisan issue, or at least it shouldn’t be,” he added.

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Rubio has called for Kerry’s removal as climate envoy.

Fox News was unable to immediately reach Merkley’s office for comment.

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