Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio is urging President Donald Trump to bring up political prisoners and human rights in communist China when Chinese President Xi Jinping visits Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach next week.
Trump as a candidate frequently slammed China on trade and criticized it for not doing more to rein in North Korean nuclear proliferation.
Trump hasn’t been known for pressing human rights concerns — though he did tweet his support for Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez last month after a meeting with Rubio and Lopez’s wife in the White House.
“It is imperative that the president raise the plight of political prisoners and human rights activists by name in his discussions with Chinese President Xi Jinping, and press for their immediate and unconditional release,” said Rubio in a statement today after The Palm Beach Post asked for his thoughts on the upcoming Trump-Xi summit.
“As those being persecuted have said, this kind of pressure often results in improved conditions and shorter sentences, not to mention the incalculable hope that comes from knowing they have not been forgotten by the United States of America.”