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Cablegate: May 8 Mfa Press Briefing: Arms Sales to Sudan;

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INFO RUEHAB/AMEMBASSY ABIDJAN 0043
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1548
RUEHHI/AMEMBASSY HANOI 3611
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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BEIJING 003063

SIPDIS

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL ETRD SU JA KN CA PM MX IV RW VM
SUBJECT: MAY 8 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: ARMS SALES TO SUDAN;
JAPAN PM'S SHRINE GIFT; UNREST IN MACAO, MILAN, BARCELONA;
BDA; TAINTED PRODUCTS; FM LI RETIREMENT; VISITS

1. Key points at the May 8 MFA Press Conference made by MFA
Spokesman Jiang Yu were:

-- The MFA said arms sales to Sudan are limited to
conventional weapons and such sales to African nations are
generally "small-scale."

-- In light of PM Abe's reported gift to the Yasukuni Shrine,
China hopes Japan can follow consensus between the two
countries on developing healthy bilateral relations.

-- China supports the Macao SAR government in handling recent
protests over poor social conditions and the influx of cheap
Mainland labor.

-- Technical problems involving the Banco Delta Asia issue
are being resolved.

-- The spokeswoman avoided questions about contaminated
pharmaceuticals, referring reporters to health and consumer
safety agencies.

-- Former FM Li Zhaoxing was replaced because of the
"retirement age."

-- The Presidents of Vietnam and Rwanda, as well as the Cote
d'Ivoire Foreign Minister, will visit China in May.

Sudan: Weapon Sales, Peacekeepers
---------------------------------

2. At the May 8 regular press briefing, MFA Spokeswoman
Jiang Yu said Chinese weapons sales to Sudan have been
limited to conventional weapons and that arms sales to Africa
generally are of a "small-scale." She called an Amnesty
International report criticizing China for weapon sales to
Sudan "groundless," adding that China takes a cautious,
responsible approach to arms sales.

3. In response to questions on China's contributions to
peacekeeping troops in Darfur, Jiang stated that more than
400 Chinese peacekeepers are already on the ground and have
extended their tours for six months. The spokeswoman added
that China will send a team of engineers to support the UN
force during the second phase of the Annan plan. All parties
should stick to the "double-check" strategy in supporting a
political solution in Darfur, said Jiang as she warned that
no actions should be taken to further complicate the
situation there.

Japan and Yasukuni Shrine
-------------------------

4. The Yasukuni Shrine issue is important and sensitive and
China hopes Japan will abide by the consensus recently
reached between the two countries on developing healthy
relations, said Jiang when asked for China's reaction to PM
Abe's offering of a plant at the shrine.

Nothing New on Six-Party Talks, BDA
------------------------------------

5. Jiang offered no new information in response to questions
about Banco Delta Asia and restarting of the Six-Party Talks.
Relevant parties are currently working to resolve the
remaining technical problems, she said.

Protests in Macao
-----------------

6. China supports Macao SAR government efforts to maintain
stability and prosperity in accordance with the law, Jiang
said in response to a question on May 1 demonstrations in the
region the reporter said were over poor social conditions and
the influx of cheap Mainland labor.

Overseas Chinese Should be Good Global Citizens
--------------------------------------------- --


BEIJING 00003063 002 OF 002


7. Reporters asked about reports of recent unrest in Chinese
communities of Barcelona, Spain and Milan, Italy. Jiang said
China requests that its citizens abroad contribute to local
society while respecting local laws and hopes foreign
governments will safeguard the rights and interests of
resident Chinese citizens and local citizens of Chinese
ethnicity.

Contaminated Food and Drug Exports
----------------------------------

8. China has strict regulations governing its pharmaceutical
industry and the materials it uses, said Jiang when asked to
comment on a case of tainted drug products in Panama. The
China State Food and Drug Administration (CSFDA) investigated
this case last year at the request of the United States FDA
and found the relevant Chinese company was not a certified
medical producer, Jiang added. She referred all questions
regarding the melamine import case, FDA inspectors in China,
the arrest of Mao Li and deaths of Guangzhou pigs to the
CSFDA and relevant local authorities.

Li Zhaoxing Retirement Due to Age
---------------------------------

9. The spokeswoman pointed to the "retirement age"
restrictions when asked why former FM Li had been replaced by
new FM Yang Jiechi. Jiang added that Li had made great
contributions to and would continue to support China's
foreign affairs.

Canada FM Visit, Huseyin Celil Case
-----------------------------------

10. FM MacKay of Canada met with FM Yang and State Councilor
Tang Jiaxuan during a recent visit to China, confirmed Jiang.
Asked about Canadian consular access to Uighur-Canadian
Huseyin Celil, who was convicted in Urumqi on terrorism
charges, Jiang said Celil is a Chinese citizen according to
international law and was an integral member of an
international terrorist organization. China hopes the two
countries can properly handle such disputes for the good of
the long-term bilateral relationship.

Reeducation-Through-Labor Camps
--------------------------------

11. China opposes interference in China's internal affairs
by the German government, said Jiang when asked for comment
on a possible German government resolution condemning China's
reeducation-through-labor camps. China's use of the camps
has a legal basis and serves to reduce crime and protect the
legal rights and interests of the Chinese people.

Mexico Trade Dispute Needs Fair Resolution
------------------------------------------

12. China resolves trade disputes based on equality and
mutual benefit, said Jiang responding to the ongoing WTO
dispute between Mexico and China over high Mexican tariffs on
Chinese textile imports. Jiang referred specific questions
to the Ministry of Commerce.

Visits: Vietnam, Rwanda, Cote d'Ivoire
--------------------------------------

13. At the invitation of President Hu, Vietnam President
Triet will pay a state visit to China May 15-18 as will
President Kagame of Rwanda May 13-18. The Cote d'Ivoire FM
will pay an official visit May 9-18. Premier Wen will attend
the Asia Development Bank 2007 Shanghai meeting May 16-17
where he will deliver a speech.
RANDT

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