Cablegate: October 7 Mfa Press Briefing: Taiwan Arms Sales, Financial
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SUBJECT: October 7 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: TAIWAN ARMS SALES, FINANCIAL
CRISIS, GUANTANAMO UIGHURS, NORTH KOREAN MISSILE TESTS, HU JIA, MILK
CRISIS, RULES FOR FOREIGN JOURNALISTS, COUNTERFEIT CHINESE
MICROCHIPS IN U.S. WEAPONS, PAKISTAN PRESIDENT ZADARI
1. Key points at the October 7 afternoon MFA press briefing were:
-- China hopes that the two U.S. presidential candidates will
understand the importance of properly handling the Taiwan issue,
adhere to the "One China" policy, abide by the three Sino-U.S. Joint
Communiques, and oppose Taiwan independence.
-- The spokesperson reiterated China's commitment to "strengthening
coordination and cooperation with other countries" in the effort to
"safeguard the stability of international financial markets and the
healthy and sound development of [China's] economy."
-- Regarding the fate of the 17 Chinese nationals held at Guantanamo
Bay, China hopes that the United States will take the issue
"seriously" and repatriate these "terrorism suspects" to China
-- The spokesperson could not confirm reports of North Korean
missile tests in recent days.
-- Responding to reports that Hu Jia may receive the Nobel Peace
Prize, the spokesperson pointed out that Hu Jia committed the crime
of "subverting the state", and he added that the prize "should be
awarded to the right person."
-- The Chinese government will "strengthen supervision over food
safety," and the spokesperson expressed his belief that "foreign
consumers will regain their confidence in Chinese food products."
-- The "policy of opening up won't change," and China will continue
to facilitate the work of foreign journalists.
-- The spokesperson expressed "surprise," "shock," and disbelief
when questioned about reports of counterfeit Chinese microchips in
-- Pakistani President Zadari will visit China at the invitation of
President Hu Jintao from October 14 to October 17.
Taiwan Arms Sales
2. At the October 9 regular MFA press briefing, spokesperson Qin
Gang reiterated China's "clear, solemn, and resolute opposition" to
the recently announced U.S. decision to sell arms to Taiwan. Asked
to comment on the expressions of support for the sale from both U.S.
presidential candidates, the spokesperson stressed that the Taiwan
issue is a "core issue" that forms an "important political
foundation" in U.S.-China relations. The nearly 30 years of
U.S.-China diplomatic ties, he said, "proves that when the Taiwan
issue can be properly handled, our political foundations can be
safeguarded and our bilateral relations can go smoothly."
"Otherwise," he continued, "Our bilateral relations will experience
difficulties, twists, and turns." Noting that "all aspects of U.S.
society attach importance to its relations with China," the
spokesperson urged the U.S. to "cherish the important political
foundation" of the Taiwan issue in U.S.-China relations. "China
hopes," he said, "that the two U.S. presidential candidates will
understand this and adhere to the 'One China' policy, abide by the
Three Joint Communiques, oppose Taiwan independence, and contribute
to bilateral relations."
3. Noting China's position that the "international community should
work together" to "overcome the difficulty" of the global financial
crisis, the spokesperson reported that China's central bank "and
other authorities" are maintaining "close communication and contact"
with authorities in other countries. The spokesperson added that
China seeks "to continue to strengthen coordination and cooperation"
with other countries to "safeguard the stability of international
financial markets and the healthy and sound development of our
4. Asked for comment on this week's U.S. court rulings on the fate
of 17 Uighurs detained at Guantanamo Bay, Qin stated that China's
position of "demanding that the U.S. repatriate these terrorist
suspects to China" remains unchanged. Stressing that the 17
"terrorism suspects" are members of the East Turkestan Islamic
Liberation Movement, he added that China "hopes the U.S. will take
this issue seriously and repatriate these 17 people (sic) to China
shortly." Questioned about concerns of some that the Uighurs may
face torture if they return to China, the spokesperson characterized
such concerns as coming from a "biased mind," and added that "China
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is a country under rule of law" whose relevant authorities "forbid"
torture. After the suspects return, Qin continued, Chinese
judiciary authorities will "deal with them according to law."
North Korean Missile Tests
5. Responding to a request for comment on reports that North Korea
had tested short-range missiles in recent days, as well as for
comment on reports of South Korean military officials' concern over
the possibility that North Korea may be developing nuclear warheads,
the spokesperson stated that he had read the "relevant reports" but
"cannot confirm" the reports.
Hu Jia and Nobel Peace Prize
6. Asked for comment on reports that jailed Chinese dissident Hu Jia
might receive the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize, the spokesperson reminded
the audience that Hu Jia "committed the crime of subverting the
state and has been convicted." Stating that awarding Hu the prize
would constitute a "rude interference in China's affairs," Qin
voiced his hope that award sponsors would avoid "doing such a thing
that could affect relations with China and damage their image in the
hearts of the Chinese people." The Nobel Peace Prize, he said,
should be "awarded to the right person." Awarding the prize to a
person such as Hu Jia, he said, would "be against the purpose" of
the Prize. "If they are looking for a Chinese person to award this
prize," Qin added, "I believe there are thousands of Chinese
7. Asked to respond to reports that the Government of Brazil has
decided to ban all food products from China because of the milk
scandal, the spokesperson said that China understands any
government's desire to safeguard the safety and health of its
citizens. Nations should take the issue of tainted Chinese dairy
products seriously, Qin said, while at the same time remaining
"realistic" and keeping a "sober mind." Adding that the "next step"
for Chinese authorities will be strengthening supervision over food
safety, the spokesperson expressed belief that foreign consumers
will see the Chinese government's actions and "regain their
confidence in Chinese food products."
Rules for Foreign Journalists
8. Asked if a final statement had been issued regarding reporting
rules put in place for foreign journalists covering the Olympics,
the spokesperson reiterated that China's "policy of opening up won't
change," and that China "will continue to facilitate foreign
Counterfeit Chinese Microchips in U.S. Weapons
9. Asked to comment on a Business Week report that counterfeit
microchips from China may have jeopardized the safety of some U.S.
military equipment, Qin, expressing his "surprise" and "shock" at
such questions, stated that he had neither read nor heard of such
10. Visit: Pakistani President Zadari
11. The spokesperson announced that Pakistani President Zadari will
visit China from October 14 to October 17 at the invitation of
President Hu Jintao. In addition to meeting with President Hu,
President Zadari will also meet with Premier Wen Jiabao, Wu Bangguo,
and Jia Qinglin.