GENEVA, Mar 21, 2001 -- (Agence France Presse) The U.S. will introduce a resolution condemning Beijing's human rights record at the UN Human Rights Commission this year, stressing the need for the UN to speak out on China, a leading U.S. official confirmed here on Wednesday.

Michael Parmly, acting assistant secretary of state for democracy, human rights and labor, told a news briefing the United States was "seeking co-sponsors on every continent".

However, he added, the important thing was that the UN Human Rights Commission which opened its annual six week session here on Monday discusses the situation in China even if it does not come to a vote.

"We are consulting with a number of members of the Commission in the search for co-sponsors because we feel that what we want to state is the consensus of the international community, not simply an American view," Parmly told reporters.

The European Union announced on Monday that it would express concern over Chinese violations and vote for a resolution of condemnation during this year's session, but would not co-sponsor the move.

The U.S. text is expected to be presented to the 53-member Commission during the second week of April.

Parmly said the "global record" on human rights in China was "strongly negative" despite improvements in some areas.

"It's important that we, the members of the Commission, speak out on that record," he said.