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Cablegate: October 11 Mfa Press Briefing: Burma, Arrest Of

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TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2693
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

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SUBJECT: OCTOBER 11 MFA PRESS BRIEFING: BURMA, ARREST OF
DPRK ASYLUM SEEKERS, DALAI LAMA AND MORE

1. Key points at the October 11 MFA Press Briefing:

-- The situation in Burma is "relaxing" and is
"turning in a good direction." The international
community should offer "constructive" help to allow
Burma to realize stability, reconciliation, democracy
and development.

-- ROK consulate officials "obstructed" Chinese police
during the October 9 incident at the Korean
International School and "violated" the Vienna
Convention. Chinese security forces acted properly in
the handling of "four unidentified people" who broke
into the campus.

-- The PRC "resolutely opposes" the awarding of the
Congressional Gold Medal to the Dalai Lama and has
made "solemn" representations to make this position
clear to the USG.

Burma Unrest
------------

2. At the October 11 regular MFA press briefing, MFA
Spokesman Liu Jinchao said the situation in Burma
(referred to as "Myanmar") has "relaxed" and is
"turning in a good direction." The international
community should help Burma in "a constructive way" to
realize stability, reconciliation, democracy and
development. The international community should also
try to be helpful in the mediation efforts led by the
UN Secretary General. (Note: This was mistranslated
at the press conference as EU Secretary General.)

Arrest of DPRK Asylum Seekers at Korean School
--------------------------------------------- -

3. Chinese police, Liu said, received a report on
October 9 of "four unidentified people" in the Korean
International School in Beijing. Chinese public
security authorities handled the matter "properly" in
order to preserve "normal order" and the safety and
security of faculty and students. ROK consular
officials, however, "obstructed" police in disregard
of international law and "violated" the Vienna
Convention. The case is under investigation and will
be handled properly according to law, Liu added.

Dalai Lama Gold Medal
---------------------

4. China "resolutely opposes" the decision by the
United States Congress to award the Dalai Lama with
the "so-called" Gold Medal. China has made "solemn"
representations to make this position clear to the
USG. China opposes "interference" by any country or
person in China's internal affairs under the name of
religion.

China-Japan Consultation on East China Sea
------------------------------------------

5. The 10th Round of Sino-Japanese consultations on
the East China Sea took place October 11 in Beijing.
MFA Department of Asian Affairs Director General Hu
Zhengyue is heading the Chinese delegation while
Kenichiro Sasae, Director General of the Japanese
Foreign Ministry's Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau,
is leading the talks for Japan. China will press
ahead in a "pro-active" and "pragmatic" manner to
reach a plan acceptable to both sides. Liu said the
Chinese government hopes Japan can "meet us halfway."

Exchange Rate, EU-China Economic Dialogue
-----------------------------------------

6. A Bloomberg reporter asked Liu whether China would
be willing to host a meeting with EU Finance Ministers
along the lines of the U.S.-China Strategic Economic
Dialogue. Liu responded that China will continue to
reform the RMB exchange rate regime. There are some
countries, including the EU, that have concerns about
the exchange rate and China is ready to discuss and
consult with them on the basis of equality. Liu,
however, said questions regarding a possible EU-China
economic dialogue should be directed to other
"relevant authorities."

Six-Party Talks, U.S. Team of Experts
-------------------------------------

7. Liu said he was unaware of any discussions between

BEIJING 00006607 002 OF 002


Chinese officials and members of the U.S. team of
experts traveling to Pyongyang today. Liu said he
thought the USG would "exchange views" with the other
parties in the Six-Party Talks in "due time."

Taiwan: Don't Use the "P" Word
------------------------------

8. Liu referred a question on China's reaction to
Taiwan's Double Ten military parade to the State
Council Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO). Liu chastised
another reporter for referring to Taiwan "President"
Chen Shui-bian. The term "president" is "inconsistent
with Taiwan's status," Liu said, adding that "I have
no comment on this kind of person."

Colombian Peace Process
-----------------------

9. Asked about the efforts of Venezuelan President
Hugo Chavez to mediate between the Colombian
government and rebel groups, Liu said the PRC has been
following closely the Colombian peace process and
welcomes efforts by Colombia, Venezuela and the
international community to bring about the early
release of hostages.
Piccuta

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