Fintech News & Trends in Hong Kong and Asia

Democratic systems ‘diverse’

Seminar told variety of approaches is basic feature of political civilization

The Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (PHOTO / IC)

Democratic systems used to protect human rights are diversified and should be appropriate to each country's own situation, experts on law, politics and public affairs from China and overseas said at an international seminar on Wednesday.

They said democratic practices in different countries and regions differ, and an open space needs to be built for discussions about democracy and human rights.

The greater efforts we pay in promoting the democratic system, the stronger protection of human rights and the more harmonious development our society will have

Luo Huijun, professor at Central South University’s Institute of Marxism

The experts made the remarks at an international webinar on "The Diversity of Democracy: Systems and Practices across States", which was led by the China Society for Human Rights Studies and hosted by Central South University's Human Rights Center in Changsha, Hunan province.

Chen Yao, a professor at Shanghai Jiao Tong University's School of International and Public Affairs, said diversity of democratic systems is the basic feature of human political civilization, with different political development paths having shaped a diversity of democratic systems.

He said the international community entered an era of diversified democratic development in the late 20th century, and many countries and regions, including those in Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, have established democratic systems and gradually consolidated them.

"The democratic practices in different nations are characterized by various forms and richness," Chen said, adding that Chinese-style democracy is an important manifestation of the diversity of democratic systems.

President Xi Jinping called Chinese democracy "whole-process people's democracy" for the first time in November 2019 during an inspection tour in Shanghai. He highlighted the development of the concept at a grand gathering in Beijing on July 1 to mark the centenary of the Communist Party of China.

He again stressed the concept last month at a central conference on work related to people's congresses, emphasizing that there are many ways to achieve democracy and there is no one-size-fits-all model.

He added that it is undemocratic in itself to use a single yardstick to measure the world's various political systems and examine the rich political civilization of mankind with a monochrome eye.

Fabio Marcelli, research director of the Italian National Research Council's Institute for International Legal Studies, said no part of the world has a monopoly on democracy, and that democracy is an issue or field that can be discussed and jointly constructed.

Regarding democratic systems as the best and most effective means to protect human rights, Luo Huijun, a professor at Central South University's Institute of Marxism, said China has intensified protection of human rights while implementing the socialist democratic political system with Chinese characteristics.

"The greater efforts we pay in promoting the democratic system, the stronger protection of human rights and the more harmonious development our society will have," he added.

Liu Ming, a researcher from Nankai University's Center for the Study of Human Rights in Tianjin, said China's whole-process people's democracy not only has a complete set of institutions and procedures, but also full participation.

Contact the writers at caoyin@chinadaily.com.cn