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Cablegate: May 8 Mfa Press Briefing: Burma, Zimbabwe, Hu Japan Visit,

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TAGS: PREL PGOV KOLY KS JA VT ZI BM
SUBJECT: MAY 8 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: BURMA, ZIMBABWE, HU JAPAN VISIT,
DALAI TALKS, CHINESE IN KOREA, VATICAN, GRAIN PRICES


1. Key points at the May 8 MFA press briefing were:

-- China urged the Burmese Government to cooperate and consult with
the international community on disaster aid.

-- Contrary to media reports, the Chinese arms shipment did not
reach Zimbabwe.

-- President Hu Jintao reached an important consensus in Japan
regarding regular high-level meetings.

-- China hopes "the Dalai side" will "take concrete actions to truly
stop separatist activities, plotting and provoking violent actions
and disrupting the Beijing Olympics."

-- Conflicts between protesters and Chinese students in Seoul and a
recent DUI arrest of a Chinese diplomat in Korea are separate
incidents.

-- China is "willing to improve relations and conduct further
dialogue and make progress on the normalization of relations" with
the Vatican.

-- China has pledged an additional 2 million USD to the World Food
Program.

Burma Must Cooperate and Consult with International Community on
Aid
--------------------------------------------- -------

2. At the May 8, 2008 regular MFA press briefing, MFA Spokesman Qin
Gang urged the Burmese Government to "cooperate" and "consult" with
the international community on disaster relief efforts.
International assistance should "follow the principle of equality
and mutual respect" and should "respect Burma's sovereignty." Qin
also urged patience and communication when dealing with Burma.
China is prepared to send rescue and medical teams provided the
Burmese Government agrees.

3. Qin listed the financial support which has been given to the
Burmese Government by various Chinese organizations. He announced
that the Chinese Government would give 30 million RMB (approximately
USD 4.2 million) in aid in addition to the USD 1 million which was
already pledged. Qin said the first aid shipment from China
included tents, food and medication, though he did not know if grain
was included.

Arms Not Delivered to Zimbabwe
------------------------------

4. Qin called reports that the Chinese ship the "An Yue Jiang"
delivered arms to Zimbabwe a "fabrication." Qin said the ship
unloaded some non-military goods but "Zimbabwe failed to receive"
the military goods.

Hu Reached Important Consensus with Japan
-----------------------------------------

5. Qin said President Hu Jintao reached an important consensus with
the Japanese Government regarding regular high-level exchanges. Qin
encouraged reporters to focus on Hu's upcoming "important address"
at a Japanese university. There is no specific date yet set for the
first summit between Japanese and Chinese leaders, said Qin.

6. Asked about protests in Japan during Hu's visit, Qin said that
"some forces and individuals conducted some activities within
Japanese law." However, "the majority of Japanese support
China-Japanese friendship." Qin said a "small handful of voices"
will not stop the development of China-Japan relations. The
"Japanese Government and people support the Chinese Government's
efforts to ensure China's territorial integrity."

China's Negotiations with the Dalai Lama
----------------------------------------

7. Qin said China's attitude toward negotiations with the Dalai Lama
is "serious, honest and sincere." China hopes "the Dalai side" will
also be "sincere" and "take concrete actions to truly stop
separatist activities, plotting and provoking violent actions and
disrupting the Beijing Olympics." Qin said no matter how loud the
voices of protesters, the progress in Tibet will "not be blocked."


Chinese Students in Korea and Chinese Diplomat DUI
--------------------------------------------- -----

8. Responding to a question about unruly Chinese students during
torch relay protests in Korea and the arrest of a Chinese diplomat
for driving under the influence, Qin said the reporter was
inappropriately linking the two issues. Regarding the students, Qin
said some Chinese students had been "emotional and radical" because

BEIJING 00001771 002 OF 002


"some forces wanted to disrupt the torch." These students were
acting out of love for the Olympics. The conflict had a reason and
should be responded to calmly and objectively, said Qin. Qin also
expressed China's sympathy for the Koreans who were injured. He
pointed out that there are large numbers of Chinese living in Korea
and most of them are law abiding. China encourages all of its
citizens overseas to follow the laws, regulations and customs of
their host country.

9. Qin said a DUI incident involving a Chinese diplomat in Korea is
under investigation. China requests its diplomats to follow the
laws and regulations of the host country. Qin encouraged the ROK to
"remain calm and objective."

China-Vatican Relations
-----------------------

10. Qin said he had taken note of the Pope's remarks following a
Chinese concert at the Vatican. The concert was a "successful
non-governmental exchange" which China believes will strengthen
understanding and friendship. China is "willing to improve
relations and conduct further dialogue and make progress on the
normalization of relations."

China Concerned about Grain Prices
-----------------------------------

11. Qin announced that China was "ready to provide help to the best
of its ability" for the World Food Program (WFP). In addition to
the USD 2.5 million China had already pledged, Qin announced another
USD 2 million to the WFP. The Chinese Government is concerned about
rising grain prices and their effect on developing countries, he
stated.

Visits
------

10. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev will visit China at the
invitation of Premier Wen Jiabao May 23-24. The schedule for his
visit is under consultation but he will meet with various Chinese
leaders, including President Hu Jintao. Thai Prime Minister Samak
Sundaravej will visit China May 15-17. Singapore's Foreign Minister
George Yeo will visit May 14-18. From May 14-16, FM Yang Jiechi
will attend a meeting of the foreign ministers of China, Russia and
India in Russia and attend a meeting of the BRIC countries. Yang
will host bilateral meetings with his counterparts while in Russia.


RANDT

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