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China should ensure greater freedom of religion: Hillary

In her first major foreign policy speech since becoming the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged to work more cooperatively with Beijing, while favouring greater religious freedom in the country.

world Updated: Feb 14, 2009 20:11 IST

In remarks that could irk China, the United States has said that Beijing should ensure greater religious freedom for the “Chinese and Tibetans”.

In her first major foreign policy speech since becoming the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged to work more cooperatively with Beijing, while favouring greater religious freedom in the country.

Ahead of her next week’s trip to Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and China, Clinton called for ensuring religious freedom without fear of persecution to Tibetans and the Chinese.

She also spoke for liberty for Myanmar’s human rights activist Aung San Suu Kyi.

“As part of our dialogues, we will hold ourselves and others accountable as we work to expand human rights and create a world that respects those rights, one where Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi can live freely in her own country, where the people of North Korea can freely choose their own leaders, and where Tibetans and all Chinese people can enjoy religious freedom...,” she said Clinton addressing the prestigious Asia Society in New York on Friday.

Offering South Korea a “permanent” peace treaty, aid and normalisation of ties if it “eliminates” its atomic weapons programme, Hillary also said the new administration was committed to resolve the issue through six-party talks.

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