China vigorously denies any abuse.
High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, whose office released the report, has since concluded her term.
For some, what is at stake is the West’s moral authority on human rights that has prevailed in the decades since the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in the aftermath of millions of civilian deaths in World War Two.
Rights groups accuse China of abuses against Uyghurs, a mainly Muslim ethnic minority numbering around 10 million in the western region of Xinjiang, including the mass use of forced labour in internment camps. The United States, a member of the council, has accused China of genocide.
Doomed to fail?
“The developing world will reject all anti-China initiatives initiated by Western countries,” China’s Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva Chen Xu told reporters.
“The stronger the mandate, the bigger chances of it being defeated,” Wientzek added.
Taking on China and Russia?
The China dilemma facing democracies is complicated by calls by NGOs for a parallel motion tasking an independent expert with boosting human rights scrutiny inside Russia.
Additional reporting: AFP