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The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights: One Covenant, Two Chinese Texts?

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This article discloses the fact that there have coexisted two Chinese texts of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. One of the texts has been widely used by the United Nations and in China for more than three decades. However, it is not the authentic Chinese text of ICCPR. The authentic Chinese text of the Covenant, as published in the United Nations Treaty Series, has been rarely referred to in Chinese literature on human rights. The article compares the two texts and points out a number of mistakes in the widely used text in the light of the object and purpose of the Covenant. The article also analyses the legal and practical consequences of the situation, and proposes both a legally justifiable and practically acceptable solution to the problem.


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