To receive any questions or petitions from members of the public
Clara Cheung attended the meeting and presented a petition: “We request the council to terminate Sheffield’s sister city relationships with Anshan and Chengdu in China. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) government has been violating human rights and universal values, and do not adhere to international rules of conduct. From the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre, the ongoing Uyghur genocide, the demise of Hong Kong's autonomy, the persistent military threat against Taiwan, to its support of Putin’s invasion in Ukraine, the CCP completely displays its totalitarianism nature.
The establishment of the sister city agreement was intended to be a diplomatic strategy to promote economic activities and cultural exchange, based on genuine exchanges for mutual benefits. However, the CCP has manipulated this form of diplomacy to spread its hegemonic propaganda. This has triggered a wave of closures of the Confucius Institutes across Europe, America, and recently a debate on education bill in the UK parliament. Besides, nearly half of the Swedish cities have already terminated their sister city agreement with China over the past 5 years.
With all these evidences of China spreading totalitarianism, we shudder to continue the “sister city” relationship between Sheffield and Anshan & Chengdu in China. This is a matter of safeguarding human rights and aligning with the values of Sheffield as a City of Sanctuary”.
Response: Sheffield has a history of relationships with other cities in countries across the globe and has formal relationships with at least 13 cities spread around the world, some of which have been in existence for over 70 years. We are currently in the process of reviewing our international relationships. Your petition and any comments you make at today’s meeting will be considered as part of this review.