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Regional National Autonomy under Challenge: Law, Practice and Recommendations

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Regional national autonomy is claimed to be the "basic policy" of the Chinese Communist Party and a "basic political system" of the State to solve the minority nationalities' issues in China. Within the framework of "basic law", the Regional National Autonomy Law, the rights of the minority nationalities to administer their internal affairs shall be guaranteed. The present severe challenges to this system can be observed through its malfunctions in ethnic conflict solution, the maintenance of cultural diversity and the due regards of the interests of minorities in the quick the economic development. By developing its research methodology based on reviewing previous studies in this field, this article tries to describe this system in law and in practice through four essential elements, which include territory, group, organs of self-government and autonomous power of regional national autonomy. Taking into account the problems of implementation of law and the institutional design of regional national autonomy, this article briefly explores options to provide a meaningful autonomy for minority nationalities in China.

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Law, Norwegian Centre for Human Rights, University of Oslo, Norway; 2: Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China; Norwegian Centre for Human Rights, Faculty of Law, University of Oslo, Norway


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