​China’s ‘assurances’ not good enough for extradition

Minister of Justice Amy Adams should not extradite a New Zealand resident to China because she can’t rely on that Government’s assurances that it will not subject him to torture or the death penalty, the Green Party says.

Minister of Justice Amy Adams should not extradite a New Zealand resident to China because she can’t rely on that Government’s assurances that it will not subject him to torture or the death penalty, the Green Party says.

Minister Adams confirmed today that Kyung Yup Kim, who has been a New Zealand resident for 26 years, will be extradited to China. She said her decision was made off the back of “assurances” from the Chinese Government that he would receive a fair trial and would not face the death penalty.

“There is no way the Minister can actually guarantee Mr Kim will receive a fair trial, won’t be tortured and won’t be subject to the death penalty,” said Green Party human rights spokesperson Marama Davidson.

“New Zealand has signed up to the United Nations Convention against Torture and as such we are not supposed to send people to countries where they could be tortured by the state*.

“Just last week, the United Nations said that ‘the practice of torture and ill-treatment is still deeply entrenched in the criminal justice system’ in China.

“In light of that, there is no way Amy Adams can say that Mr Kim will definitely not be tortured or face the death penalty, and so he must not be extradited.

“The National Government has a poor record of standing up for human rights when it believes that taking a stand will interfere with our international trade relationships.

“The Prime Minister refused to challenge Saudi Arabia about its practice of executing innocent women and children, and it seems extremely unlikely that Amy Adams will stand up to China – our second biggest trading partner.

“If a person commits a crime, they must face a trial, but the trial must be fair and punishment must be proportionate,” said Ms Davidson.

*Article 3 of the UN Convention against Torture
No State Party shall expel, return ("refouler") or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture. For the purpose of determining whether there are such grounds, the competent authorities shall take into account all relevant considerations including, where applicable, the existence in the State concerned of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights.

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