Hultgren on Trump Dialogues with World Leaders: Human Rights Must be Integral to U.S. Foreign Policy
“We cannot sit on the sidelines…we remain strong when our values are upheld around the world”
Washington, DC — U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (IL-14) today released a statement on President Trump’s meetings this week with world leaders, including upcoming meetings with President Xi Jinping of China. Rep. Hultgren is Co-Chairman of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission (TLHRC) and a commissioner on both the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) and the Helsinki Commission (Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe).
“I am concerned at the muted attention the administration has given so far on human rights—from the downplayed release of the State Department’s human rights report to excluding vital human rights discussions with Egypt’s President Sisi this week to neglecting a full response to the human rights violations demonstrated in the chemical weapons attack in Syria. We cannot sit on the sidelines.
“Universal human dignity isn’t up for debate. Protecting and advocating for human rights should be at the heart of any foreign policy negotiation and discussion. Promoting trade and economic and military cooperation are all essential to America's future—but these mean little if we ignore the people in countries around the world who are suffering at the hands of their own governments and their rights are beingabused.
“With Chinese President Xi Jinping in town this week, I hope the administration steps up and condemns the ongoing human rights abuses in that nation which are clear and well-documented. I know President Trump wants America to remain strong—we remain strong when our values are upheld around the world, and when leaders understand we are serious when it comes to defending human rights across any border. We must speak truth to power.”