National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice met yesterday at the White House with Chinese human rights advocates to discuss issues related to human rights, including religious freedom, in China. The discussion focused on concerns regarding the deterioration of conditions inside China for both human rights generally and religious freedom specifically, as well as the participants’ recommendations regarding ways the United States can constructively encourage improvements in the situation. Participants lamented the reported removal of crosses from churches, demolition of houses of worship, and restrictions on the observance of Ramadan and other Muslim practices, as well as the continued crackdown on human rights lawyers and the importance of preserving space for civil society. Ambassador Rice reiterated the U.S. commitment to promoting human rights globally and reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to supporting the protection of human rights, including religious freedom, and other universal rights in China. Ambassador Rice affirmed the U.S. view that improving human rights conditions is in China’s long-term interest and will continue to feature in the U.S.-China dialogue.