I will discuss human rights in Beijing, says Amsterdam mayor

Society Materials 6 August 2008 16:35 (UTC +04:00)

Amsterdam mayor Job Cohen will raise the issue of human rights during his stay in Beijing, where he will attend the Olympic Games, he told Dutch news agency ANP on Wednesday.

Cohen emphasized Chinese violations of human rights are not a good-enough reason to avoid going to the games, dpa reported.

"I think it is always better to remain in contact with a country rather than avoid it," he said shortly before his departure to China.

"We should not ignore the facts. The situation in China is far from ideal and incomparable with our country," Cohen said, adding the Dutch embassy supports several non-governmental organizations that deal with human rights issues in China.

Beijing and Amsterdam are twin cities. In recent years mutual visits from both mayors and accompanying delegations has led to increased cooperation, among others concerning projects of sustainable development.