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Cablegate: April 22 Mfa Press Briefing: Harassment of Chinese Student,

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OO RUEHCN RUEHGH RUEHVC
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O 221228Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY BEIJING
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6810
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BEIJING 001550

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TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM PTER KOLY CH FR KS KN JA RS HK XG
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SUBJECT: APRIL 22 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: HARASSMENT OF CHINESE STUDENT,
PROTESTS, U/S DOBRIANSKY-DALAI LAMA MEETING, FOREIGN JOURNALISTS,
VISAS, FRANCE-CHINA RELATIONS, MORE

1. Key points at the April 22 MFA press briefing were:

-- Domestic and Overseas Chinese demonstrations are "spontaneous"
expressions of patriotism that are "encouraging and touching."

-- A "U.S. State Department official" ignored Chinese opposition,
violated "basic norms of international relations" and "interfered in
China's internal affairs" by meeting with the Dalai Lama.

-- China can protect the security and legitimate rights and
interests of foreign journalists in China.

-- China's visa policy remains "unchanged."

-- DPRK Minister of Foreign Affairs Pak Ui-chun will visit China
April 26-29 at the invitation of Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi,
although specifics of the visit are still under consultation. Jiang
had no information on a rumored upcoming visit to China by Kim
Jong-il.

-- An arms shipment to Zimbabwe is part of "normal trade," has
nothing to do with "recent developments" in Zimbabwe, and was
carried out on a contract signed "last year."

-- Other Visits: Zhao Jinjun, a former ambassador to France, is
visiting France as a special representative of President Hu Jintao.
France's President of the Senate, Christian Poncelet, is visiting
China April 21-27. French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin will
visit China April 23-27, and presidential advisor Jean-David Levitte
will visit April 26-27 for "unofficial talks" with State Councilor
Dai Bingguo. EU President Jose Manuel Barroso will visit China
April 24-26.

Overseas Chinese Acting Out of Patriotism
-----------------------------------------

2. At the April 22, 2008 regular MFA press briefing, MFA
Spokesperson Jiang Yu said she would not comment on individual
cases, when asked about a Chinese student at Duke University in the
United States who had received death threats and whose family had
been harassed after she urged dialogue between pro-Tibet and
pro-China protestors. Jiang added that "Chinese students overseas
did what they did out of patriotism and the pursuit of truth,"
stating that "justice will prevail." "What they are opposing is
very clear," said Jiang.

People Can Express Patriotism in Legal, Rational Way
--------------------------------------------- -------

3. Chinese students and other Chinese people "spontaneously" erupted
in calls for boycotts recently, said Jiang when asked about protests
against French-owned Carrefour stores. The Chinese people can
"express patriotism in a legal and rational way," stated Jiang,
noting that the Government has taken some "guiding measures." She
added her hope that the French side can "respond positively" to the
calls of Chinese people.

4. Asked whether the Government is worried that foreigners might
feel unwelcome in the face of recently expressed patriotic zeal in
China, Jiang replied that people should understand the "true
aspirations and intentions" of the Chinese people, which are to
express "firm determination to safeguard China's national
sovereignty and territorial integrity," and to "oppose separatist
acts against the Motherland" and "distorted" media reports. Such
"patriotic enthusiasm is encouraging and touching," said Jiang. She
held that the Chinese people "love peace, uphold justice and value
friendship" and said the Olympic Games will enhance world friendship
and cooperation.

U.S. State Department Official "Ignores" China
--------------------------------------------- ----------

5. A "U.S. State Department official deliberately ignored China's
resolute opposition" by meeting with the Dalai Lama and "pointing a
finger at the Tibet issue," an internal affair of China, stated
Jiang in response to a reporter's question referring to Under
Secretary Dobriansky. The U.S. official committed a "serious

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violation of basic norms of international relations" and "interfered
in China's internal affairs," Jiang said, adding that China has made
"solemn representation" to the United States side. "Hard facts"
show that the March 14 riots were "premeditated by the Dalai Lama
clique and colluded by Tibetan independence separatist forces." The
U.S. official tried to "make excuses" and blame the Chinese
Government and Chinese people. China hopes the official can
understand the facts and stop indulging in and supporting the Dalai
Lama in his separatist activities, so as not to harm U.S.-China
relations and the image of the United States, Jiang stated.

China Can Protect Foreign Journalists

BEIJING 00001550 002 OF 003


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6. China will continue to protect the security and legitimate rights
and interests of foreign journalists in China, said the spokesperson
in response to a question about death threats made toward foreign
reporters. China follows "Olympic practices" and continues to
facilitate the work of foreign journalists, she added.

Arms Shipment to Zimbabwe a Normal Commercial Activity
--------------------------------------------- ---------

7. The contract for an arms shipment to Zimbabwe via a Chinese
company's ship was signed "last year" and has nothing to do with
"recent developments" in Zimbabwe, said Jiang, responding to
repeated questions on the matter. The shipment constitutes "normal
trade" between the two countries. The ship was "unable to unload"
in Zimbabwe and thus might return to China. Jiang maintained that
the Chinese Government is "prudent and cautious" in the sale of
weapons and she hopes that others will not "politicize" the issue.
Jiang pointed out that China's weapons sales make up two percent of
global arms sales, noting that the United States is the number one
arms dealer worldwide, with the UK as the sixth largest and China
the ninth. If the United States obstructed the unloading of arms
shipments, as one reporter suggested, Jiang said such action would
be "groundless."

Visa Policies "Unchanged"
-------------------------

8. China's visa policy remains "unchanged," said the spokeswoman
when asked repeatedly about reported restrictions recently
implemented on the issuance of visas to foreigners. Jiang referred
the reporter to local authorities, in response to a question noting
that the foreign chambers of commerce in Hong Kong had written
complaints to the Government claiming a serious disruption of normal
business travel.

Sarkozy's Letter to Jin Jing "Appreciated"
-------------------------------------------

9. China appreciates French President Sarkozy's "friendly" letter to
Special Olympics fencer Jin Jing as well as Sarkozy's opposition to
the "attacks" on Jin Jing during the Olympic torch relay in Paris,
said Jiang. China hopes the French Government can uphold justice,
support China's necessary and justified measures to safeguard social
order and the safety of people's lives and property, and oppose the
politicization of the Olympics. Asked about the Paris City
Council's decision to make the Dalai Lama an honorary citizen of
Paris, Jiang said that the MFA would release a statement on the
matter soon.

10. Zhao Jinjun, a former ambassador to France, is visiting France
as a special representative of President Hu Jintao, which Jiang said
is an "important diplomatic move." At the invitation of the NPC and
Chinese People's Institute of Foreign Affairs (CPIFA), France's
President of the Senate, Christian Poncelet, is visiting China April
21-27 to meet with President Hu Jintao, NPC Chairman Wu Bangguo and
Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Chairman
Jia Qinglin. French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin will visit
April 23-27 to meet with PM Wen Jiabao. Jean-David Levitte, a top
advisor to Sarkozy, will also visit China April 26-27 for
"unofficial talks" with State Councilor Dai Bingguo to discuss a
China-France strategic dialogue, said the spokesperson.

Any Effort to Safeguard Order Justified
---------------------------------------

11. When asked about reports of drug raids, migrant worker
expulsions and harassment of homosexuals in the run-up to the
Olympics, Jiang replied that she was not aware of the situation
mentioned and referred reporters to the Beijing Municipal
Government. However, Jiang added that "any effort to safeguard
social order is justified and necessary."

Tibet Closed, East China Sea, Spy Case, Torch Relay
--------------------------------------------- ------

12. Jiang addressed a number of other issues, commenting that
"special measures" are in place in Tibet because of "special
circumstances," but China hopes Tibet can be open again to tourists
and journalists as in the past. The East China Sea issue cannot be
resolved overnight, President Hu's trip to Japan is still under
consultation and China opposes visits by Japanese officials to the
Yasukuni Shrine. Espionage charges against China are groundless,
unacceptable and rooted in ulterior motives. Overseas Chinese are
"spontaneously" showing support for the Olympic torch relay, Jiang
said when asked about reports that overseas consulates and embassies
are organizing demonstrations abroad.


BEIJING 00001550 003 OF 003


Other Visits: DPRK FM, EU President
-----------------------------------

13. DPRK Minister of Foreign Affairs Pak Ui-chun will visit China
April 26-29 at the invitation of FM Yang Jiechi, although specifics
of the visit are still under consultation. Jiang had no information
regarding the DPRK's declaration of its nuclear programs or of a
rumored upcoming visit to China by Kim Jong-il. EU President Jose
Manuel Barroso will visit April 24-26.

RANDT

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