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Cablegate: June 24 Mfa Press Briefing: Six-Party Talks, Zimbabwe

VZCZCXRO1771
OO RUEHCN RUEHGH RUEHVC
DE RUEHBJ #2486 1760833
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 240833Z JUN 08
FM AMEMBASSY BEIJING
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8195
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 1991
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 0720
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 9024
RUEHSB/AMEMBASSY HARARE 0143
RUEHKT/AMEMBASSY KATHMANDU 3840

UNCLAS BEIJING 002486

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM KS KN JP ZA
SUBJECT: JUNE 24 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: SIX-PARTY TALKS, ZIMBABWE
ELECTIONS, JAPANESE PORT CALL, TIBET


1. Key points at the June 24 MFA press briefing were:

-- The spokesman would not speculate on the timing of the North
Korea nuclear declaration.

-- China is "concerned" about the situation in Zimbabwe and calls on
all parties to carry out the Presidential election peacefully.

-- The spokesman did not know whether a Japanese naval ship had
arrived in China as planned.

-- China is working hard to stabilize Tibet and allow journalists to
visit.

North Korea Nuclear Declaration and Six-Party Talks
--------------------------------------------- ------

2. At the June 24, 2008 regular MFA press briefing, MFA Spokesman
Liu Jianchao refused to provide an answer to repeated questions
about the timing of the North Korean nuclear declaration, but said
that the parties should carry out agreements in a "comprehensive and
balanced manner." Liu said that all parties are holding
consultations to decide how to proceed with the talks and that China
hopes these consultations will "produce results." Asked whether
North Korea would allow verification of its nuclear declaration, Liu
said parties are holding consultations to solve this very important
issue. Asked why North Korea has taken so long to deliver its
declaration, Liu said that the Six-Party Talks are "complicated" and
"take time." All parties are making efforts to implement the
remainder of the second phase and stepping up consultations, said
Liu.

Zimbabwe Elections and Arms Shipment
------------------------------------

3. Asked whether China still supports the holding of elections in
Zimbabwe, Liu said that China is "concerned" about the situation in
Zimbabwe and hopes that relevant parties complete the Presidential
election smoothly through dialogue and peaceful means. In response
to a question about the Chinese arms shipment to Zimbabwe, Liu said
that there were many rumors but that the Chinese ship containing the
arms, the An Yue Jiang, had already returned to China.

Japanese Port Call
------------------

4. Liu could not confirm that the Japanese warship that was
scheduled to arrive in China today had actually arrived. The ship's
visit will promote exchanges between Japan and China and deliver
earthquake relief for Sichuan, said Liu. Liu said that he did not
think the visit would provoke public anger.

Mt. Everest Access, Foreign Journalists in Tibet
--------------------------------------------- ---

5. Liu had not seen the reported comments of a government official
from Tibet who said that China would limit access to Mr. Everest for
environmental reasons. Asked when foreign journalists would be
allowed into Tibet, Liu said China is working hard to stabilize the
region and will work to make the visits happen at an early date.

Huang Qi Arrest
---------------

6. Liu said he was not familiar with the case of human rights
activist Huang Qi but said that Chinese people enjoy freedom of
expression and that no one would be punished for expressing himself.
Liu said that the case would be dealt with in accordance with the
law.

RANDT

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