The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) usually projects an image of itself as “loveable, trustable, admirable.” Boasting of its “growth record” post-pandemic or “jump” in the gross domestic product is the party’s latest attempt to build a glossy reality. Unfortunately, however, it does not appear to be the case.
In fact, in recent years, under the rule of the CCP, the economy has been suffering tremendously. As a result, the construction industry is in free fall, leaving many ordinary Chinese workers jobless. It is especially so for those from rural areas—they have no choice but to seek work overseas to make ends meet.
It is a time when the “labor trafficking” businesses bloom. The lower-class Chinese people are lured into a high-salary job promise, thousands of miles away from home without knowing what awaits them.
The Chinese Labor Watch, a U.S.–based organization which defends Chinese worker’s rights, released a report in which they collected testimonies from 100 workers who are working on the “Belt and Road” project in various location around the world. The report revealed the unthinkable misery these workers endure, while, at the same time, exposing the deceptive, inhumane nature of the CCP.
Most of the guest workers, they said, were recruited deceptively with promises of certain wages and legal work visas. However, upon arrival in the host countries, their passports were confiscated, and if they wanted to leave, they had to pay a hefty fine to the Chinese employer.
They were subjected to inhumane treatment, poor living and working conditions, excessive working hours of up to 12 hours a day, seven days a week, with no holiday leave.
Because they worked with insufficient protection and safety equipment, many suffered serious injuries, which in some cases led to permanent disability due to lack of access to medical treatment.
According to the testimonies, the vast majority of workers did not get a good education in China. Most of them have low writing and reading efficiency, which means they lack the knowledge to defend their rights under abuse. They cannot even contact the host country for help due to the fear of being deported, then suffering retaliation on returning to China. High fines and penalties are a common threat that the CCP uses to detain these workers illegally.
The report also found that Chinese workers “must repay a debt if they decide to return to China once they arrive abroad,” aside from the recruitment fee ranging from thousands to tens of thousands of yuan (US $155-1,550+). That clearly shows another face of the CCP—prideless thieves. The dictatorial regime has embraced the Marxist idea of wiping out “private ownership” by giving themselves the authority to take away people’s property ever since they gained power.
For example, “another worker who has already returned to China said that he was forced to work in Algeria for five months. As a result, he should have earned a total salary of more than 26,000 yuan (approximately US $4,030). Still, after the employer deducted the penalty for his early return to China, he only got 1,800 yuan (about US $280), stated the report.
“If a worker is unable to repay the debt, he will not be allowed to return to China, and must work for the employer for a few months without compensation. A worker who used to work in Algeria but is now in Angola said that he was forced to pay a penalty of 17,000 yuan (about US $2,630) before being permitted to leave Algeria.”
That’s not even the worst of it—employers are reported withholding workers’ wages and being constantly late paying workers’ monthly wages, sometimes even lowering their wages without saying a word.
“A worker who went to Jordan worked in the desert for five months but only received his salary for the first six days,” according to the report.
There is another case where two men were threatened “with six months of salary that had not yet been paid” by their employer if they did not stay “for maintenance and installation” when a subcontracting company’s installation project in Algeria was nearing completion in 2019.
“They did not get paid until October 2020 due to the resignation of the former manager, which is equivalent to 16 months of wages in arrears, and the workers had to borrow money for food,” China Labor Watch reported.
Despite all of the physical, mental, and financial duress they have endured, the company will beat anyone showing disobedience or attempting to go on strike.
The report pointed out that “in recent months, articles, photos, and comments on Chinese social media (such as WeChat) sharing the plight of overseas Chinese workers are often quickly censored, leading the outside world to have little understanding of their dire situation.”
It is not the first time the CCP has used its power to conceal its sins, and lying is imprinted in the party’s DNA. In its history of killing, from the “Great Leap Forward, The Great Famine, The Three Anti, The Five Anti, to The Cultural Revolution, The Tiananmen Square Massacre and the latest—the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners and other minority groups … many people have lost their lives under the CCP regime. Yet, the world and the Chinese people themselves are blind to the CCP’s crimes against humanity by its brainwashing, lying, and concealing agenda.
The CCP restricts freedom of speech, it has trashed China’s 5000-thousand-year Divine-cultural history, rewritten its bloody history, and all the while brainwashing the young generations with the “lie, evil, struggle” ideology. With such an education, CCP authorities have become unkind, driven by material greed and indifference to life.
China Labor Watch calls for global awareness of the CCP’s crimes, strengthening consulate protection for Chinese employees abroad, and supporting a victim-centered prevention, protection, and compensation system, for human trafficking victims, including forced laborers in China and overseas.