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Draft revision of Red Cross society law eyes more transparency

Chinese lawmakers are considering new draft revisions to the Law on the Red Cross Society in a bid to further boost transparency and credibility of the country's Red Cross societies.

According to the new draft, which was brought for a third reading at a bimonthly session of the National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee this week, Red Cross societies in China and their staff are required to give feedback to donors on the use of their donations in line with the law.

Those in charge and staff members directly responsible who fail to do so could face civil and criminal charges, it said.

Meanwhile, a previous clause giving Red Cross societies the power to "rectify" illegal activities carried out by their subordinate societies and staff members was deleted from the new draft.

China's Red Cross has in recent years grappled with trust issues.

Revision work for the Law on the Red Cross Society began in 2015.

The first reading of the draft revision suggested independent third-party agencies should audit donations, while the second draft expanded the Red Cross societies' duties in the donation of stem cells and organs.

The third reading, however, specified that Red Cross societies could "participate in and promote" blood, body and organ donations, and could participate in and carry out "work related to" stem cell donations.

It also said leading supervisors at all Red Cross societies must be chosen through a "democratic process."

The new draft has addressed public concerns and included pertinent revisions to the existing law, Zhang Mingqi, a vice director of the Law Committee of the NPC, told lawmakers Wednesday morning.

It will better safeguard and regulate Red Cross societies in performing their duties in accordance with the law, and boost its credibility, he said.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 22Feb17]

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small logoThis document has been published on 23Feb17 by the Equipo Nizkor and Derechos Human Rights. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.