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Cablegate: September 2 Mfa Press Briefing: Fukuda Resignation, India

VZCZCXRO3697
OO RUEHCN RUEHGH RUEHVC
DE RUEHBJ #3387/01 2462312
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 022312Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY BEIJING
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9668
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
RUEHGO/AMEMBASSY RANGOON 4731
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 0932
RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK 6397
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 2217
RUEHSI/AMEMBASSY TBILISI 0117
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 9092
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 6732
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI 4616
RUEHLM/AMEMBASSY COLOMBO 0860
RUEHTV/AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV 2091

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BEIJING 003387

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV KOLY MNUC PARM EAID PTER EFIN CH KN JA
GG, RS, PK, IN
SUBJECT: SEPTEMBER 2 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: FUKUDA RESIGNATION, INDIA
AND NSG, RUSSIA-GEORGIA, NORTH KOREA AND BURMA FOOD AID, BANK OF
CHINA

1. Key points at the September 2 afternoon MFA press briefing were:


-- The resignation of Japanese Prime Minister Fukuda is an internal
matter of Japan, but the spokesperson noted Fukuda's "great
contributions to bilateral relations."

-- China "hopes the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) will find a way to
strike a balance between nuclear non-proliferation and peaceful use
of nuclear energy."

-- China hopes both Russia and Georgia will "continue their efforts
through dialogue and consultation to ease the situation" in
Georgia.

-- The issue of granting export licenses for food aid to North Korea
and Burma is "out of [the MFA's] hands."

-- The Bank of China "follows the laws of the countries where its
branches are located" and has never been investigated by money
laundering law enforcement authorities for transferring funds to
terrorist groups.

Fukuda Resignation
------------------

2. At the September 2 regular MFA press conference, spokesperson
Jiang Yu said that the recent resignation of Japanese Prime Minister
Yasuo Fukuda was the internal affair of Japan. However, Jiang noted
that Fukuda has made "great contributions" to bilateral relations
and that China "thinks highly" of Fukuda. China is willing to work
together with Japan toward the "long term, sound and stable
development" of relations.

India and Nuclear Suppliers Group
---------------------------------

3. Asked to comment on a September 1 editorial in the People's Daily
by professor Fan Jishe critical of a U.S. proposal regarding India
at the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) meeting, Jiang said she had not
seen the article. Jiang said that China "hopes the NSG will find a
way to strike a balance between nuclear non-proliferation and
peaceful use of nuclear energy." In response to a separate question
regarding the U.S. proposal, Jiang said that China "always takes a
positive view of the NSG" and that "all countries have the right to
the peaceful use of nuclear energy."

China's Recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia
--------------------------------------------- ----

4. In response to questions about the Russia-Georgia conflict and
the possibility of China's recognizing the independence of South
Ossetia and Abkhazia, Jiang said only that "China hopes the relevant
parties will continue their efforts through dialogue and
consultation to ease the situation and find a proper resolution for
regional peace and stability."

DPRK and Burma Food Aid
-----------------------

5. Jiang said she had "no specific information" and the issue was
"out of [the MFA's] hands" regarding unspecified accusations that
China has refused to grant export licenses for food aid for North
Korea or Burma. China "attaches great importance to food
production" and "has played a positive role in world food security."
Jiang noted that China and North Korea have a "traditional"
friendship.

Bank of China
-------------

6. Responding to a question about a lawsuit filed by Israeli
citizens against the Bank of China for allegedly transfering money
to terrorist groups, Jiang said that the Bank of China always
follows the laws of the places where the bank and its overseas
branches are located and that this case has never been investigated
by anti-money laundering authorities in China or the United States.

BEIJING 00003387 002 OF 002


7. When asked whether China will seek the repatriation of two former
Bank of China managers convicted of racketeering and money
laundering in the United States, she declined to comment and
referred the journalist to "competent authorities."

Engineers Kidnapped in Pakistan
-------------------------------

8. In response to a question about two Chinese engineers from
Zhongxing Telecommunication Equipment (ZTE) kidnapped by Taliban
militants in Pakistan, Jiang said that China "attaches great
importance" to this issue and has requested the Pakistani government
rescue the engineers and ensure their safety.

Thailand Unrest
---------------

9. In response to a question about political unrest in Thailand,
Jiang said that China, "as a friendly neighbor of Thailand, closely
follows developments in Thailand and sincerely hopes that Thailand
can maintain political stability."

Iran President Visit
--------------------

10. In response to a question regarding the arrival in Beijing of
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on September 6, Jiang would
only say that "some foreign leaders have confirmed" their attendance
at the Paralympics opening ceremony.

Visits
------

11. Jiang announced that Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi will
visit India and Sri Lanka from September 7-10.

PICCUTA

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