Chinese labour camps to continue, but under another name: Amnesty
BEIJING (AFP) - China's much-vaunted abolition of its widely loathed "re-education through labour" camps risks being no more than a cosmetic change because of other rights abuses, Amnesty International said on Tuesday.
Arbitrary detention in the country will persist in unofficial "black jails", drug rehabilitation centres and other facilities, the overseas rights group said in a report.
The "re-education through labour" scheme, known as laojiao, was first instituted in the 1950s by the ruling Communist Party, which announced last month it plans to dismantle the system.
But Amnesty said: "Without a more fundamental change in the policies and practices that drive punishment of individuals and groups for nothing more than exercising their rights, there is the very real risk that the Chinese authorities will abolish one system of arbitrary detention only to expand the use of other types."