China Viewed Unfavorably for Its Human Rights Abuses: Pew Research

By Mary Hong
Mary Hong
Mary Hong
Mary Hong has contributed to The Epoch Times since 2020. She has reported on Chinese human rights issues and politics.
June 30, 2022 Updated: July 1, 2022

Unfavorable views of China are shared among the majority of 19 countries surveyed by the Pew Research Center. Human rights issues are the top reason for the negative view of the Communist regime.

In the 2022 Pew Research Center global survey released on June 29, negative views of China remain at or near historic highs in many of the 19 countries surveyed. Across the 19 countries surveyed, a median of 68 percent of respondents say they have an unfavorable view of China.

Criteria of Concern

The respondents identified concerns about four issues relating to China: China’s policies on human rights, China’s military power, economic competition with China, and China’s involvement in the politics in their country.

Among 19 nations, the United States, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and Sweden have the worst views of China, more than 80 percent of respondents in each country holds a very unfavorable opinion of China.

China’s policies on human rights top the public’s concern and are tied to the unfavorable view of the country. A median of 79 percent of respondents across the nations say those policies are a “serious” problem, and 47 percent say they are a “very serious” problem.

Tibetans, Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Hongkongers, Southern Mongolians, Taiwanese, and Chinese Democracy Activists join together to call on governments to stand against the Chinese Communist Party’s suppression of freedom, democracy, and human rights, in front of the United Nations headquarters in New York City on Oct. 1, 2020. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

China’s military power is seen as a “serious” problem by a median of 72 percent of respondents. It is seen as a relatively more important problem in the Asia-Pacific region. In Japan and Australia particularly, a majority of respondents are very concerned about China’s military.

The countries where bilateral relations are deteriorating tend to suspect China’s involvement in their domestic politics. This view is particularly shared in places like South Korea, Australia, the United States, and Japan.

Human Rights Versus Economics

In nearly all places surveyed, for those who see China’s human rights policies as a very serious problem, the public favor promoting human rights regardless of economic consequences.

A February Pew survey showed similar results among the American respondents: 70 percent, both Republican and Democrat, say the United States should try to promote human rights in China, even if it harms economic relations between the two countries.

When asked the first things that come to mind about China, “one-in-five Americans mentioned human rights, including 3 percent who specifically mentioned the Xinjiang region and the Uyghurs who live there, genocide, or concentration camps,” the Pew research reported.

Wang Xiang contributed to this report.

Mary Hong
Mary Hong has contributed to The Epoch Times since 2020. She has reported on Chinese human rights issues and politics.