The fundamental rights & duties of citizens

Written by scott friedman
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The fundamental rights & duties of citizens
The Chinese Constitution was initially approved in December of 1982. (china image by Luisafer from

The Fundamental Rights and Duties of Citizens is the second chapter of the constitution of the People's Republic of China. This chapter of China's constitution contains 56 articles outlining the rights that every Chinese citizen enjoys while specifying the duties every citizen must uphold in exchange for the benefits of that citizenship. A few of those articles are summarised below.

Article 33: Citizenship & Equality

All people with Chinese nationality hold full Chinese citizenship and enjoy equality before the law, but all Chinese citizens must also perform the duties prescribed to them according to the constitution.

Article 34: Electoral Rights

All Chinese citizens over the age of 18 have the right to vote and run for political office regardless of their sex, race, nationality, occupation, religious beliefs, property status, family background and education. The only exceptions are citizens who have had their political rights revoked by law.

Article 35: Freedoms

The Chinese constitution prescribes Chinese citizens freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of association, freedom of procession and freedom of demonstration.

Article 36: Religion

Chinese citizens have freedom of religion and may not be compelled to abandon or worship a religion by any individual, public organisation or state organ; they may also not be discriminated against because of a religion they worship. Religious activities, however, may not cause disturbances in public order, public health or the educational system. Religious activities and organisations also cannot involve foreign domination.

Article 40: Correspondence

The correspondence of Chinese citizens is protected by law and no organisation or individual may infringe upon a citizen's right to privacy except when state security, public security or criminal investigation requires it. Prosecutorial organs of the state, which are equivalent to public prosecutors in Western legal systems, are also allowed to censor correspondence according to public law.

Article 51: Interest of the State

The Fundamental Rights and Duties of Citizens of the People's Republic of China shall not infringe upon the rights of other citizens, the collective concerns of Chinese society or the interests of the state.

Article 53: Obedience to the Constitution

Chinese citizens must abide by the laws of the People's Republic of China and its constitution. They must also protect public property; observe labour discipline; protect state secrets; uphold public order; and respect social ethics.

Article 54: Integrity of the Motherland

Each citizen of the People's Republic of China must safeguard the honour, security and interests of the motherland and they must not commit crimes that are detrimental to China's honour, security and interests.

Article 55: Defense

Every Chinese citizen must defend China in any violent conflict and resist any aggression towards the motherland. Every Chinese citizen must join the militia and perform military service according to the law.

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