Ai Weiwei speaks at the Council of Foreign Relations in New York. Photograph Drew AngererGetty Images
DHARAMSHALA, November 3: Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei while discussing Human rights in China during an event at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York said that the Western governments should call out China on Human rights issues and uphold their principles.
Asked if human right can be discussed in China, Ai said, “It doesn’t matter it will hurt me or not. You have to do what you think is right and openly make - to discuss, confront and have confrontation.”
"With no clarity and transparency, which should be within a society such as China it is unclear, the direction the country or its leader is taking. This amounts to much doubt in people, mistrust and insecurity which is harmful to a nation as large as China", he added.
Since his incommunicado detention of 81 days by the Chinese authorities in 2011 for crying foul against the state Ai has been under constant surveillance.
China has come under criticism from various rights groups for its harsh crackdown on political oppositions with artistes, Human rights activists, political activists and lawyers facing the brunt of the authorities. More than 200 lawyers and activists were detained in a nationwide sweep last year.
Speaking on his latest project, the artist explained that he would be focusing on the Syrian refugee issues and campaign efforts to help the war inflicted refugees. Visiting camps, meeting refugees and interviewing politicians Ai aims to bring out other modes of his expression as an artist on this situation through the documentation.