At a State Department ceremony on Tuesday, Trump administration officials will publicly declare China to be among the worst offenders in the world when it comes to human trafficking. That will place China in the notorious “Tier 3” category alongside longtime offenders Syria, North Korea, and Zimbabwe.
According to ABC News, “Tier 3” ranking “applies to countries failing to meet minimum standards to prevent human trafficking or making significant improvement efforts. Other countries that have recently been on that list include Sudan, Iran and Haiti.”
“Countries placed in Tier 3 can be penalized with sanctions, including the withholding of non-humanitarian aid and assistance that could affect agreements with the International Monetary Fund and World Bank,” adds ABC. “Officials from countries designated in that tier can be barred from participating in U.S. government educational and cultural exchange programs.”
First daughter and senior advisor Ivanka Trump will join Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in calling out China’s egregious human rights record at Tuesday’s ceremony, unveiling the annual Trafficking in Persons Report to Congress.
The announcement comes as the Trump administration works to pull China away from North Korea and cement a more robust region-wide effort to curb Kim Jong Un’s nuclear ambitions.
China has pushed back against accusations of human rights violations in the past and it will likely do so, rather aggressively, after Tuesday’s announcement, which will mark the first time that the Trump administration has issued an official public response to China’s hostile behavior at home and abroad.