Government agrees funding for academic to investigate MPs who challenge China

29-Nov-2021 Intellasia | The Telegraph | 5:02 AM Print This Post

In March this year, Tugendhat and Duncan-Smith were two of nine UK individuals and four organisations placed under sanctions by Beijing.

In response, the Chinese Ambassador to London was banned from stepping foot in the Palace of Westminster.

‘Appalling violations’



Several countries, including the US, Canada and the Netherlands, have accused China of committing genocide in respect of its treatment of the Uyghur population, with allegations of mass incarceration and the forced sterilisation of women.

Dominic Raab, when foreign secretary, said the treatment amounted to “appalling violations of the most basic human rights”, while in April, Parliament declared that China was committing genocide in Xinjiang.

UKRI is a non-departmental public body that is funded through the science budget of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Earlier this month, The Sunday Telegraph revealed that it was paying more than a quarter of a million pounds to improve productivity on caged chicken farms in China.

Duncan-Smith is preparing to table an urgent question in Parliament this week about this latest UKRI grant.

“The British Parliament has banned the Chinese ambassador from its precincts because of its sanctioning of these people, yet they [UKRI] have ignored that,” he said.

A UKRI spokesman said: “This project is a studentship awarded by the Midlands Doctoral Training Partnership, which is a consortium led by the University of Warwick. The University of Birmingham is one of the partners in the consortium.

“ESRC funds Doctoral Training Partnerships to enable research organisations to make decisions about how to invest in postgraduate studentships in ways that best suit their institutional strategies and support for doctoral training.”

Alicia Kearns, who sits on the steering committee of CRG, said: “The China Research Group was set up to share knowledge and fresh thinking about how Britain should respond to the rise of China. I’m pleased that the University of Birmingham recognises our impact on shaping the UK’s foreign policy toward China.

“Taxpayers may be surprised that their money is funding research which has as its base assumption that the threat of China has been exaggerated.

“The CRG will continue to publish research which analyses the challenges and opportunities associated with China’s industrial and diplomatic policies.”



Category: China

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