Made in China

airtel

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Fri Dec 9, 2016 | 11:06 AM EST
EU upsets China with new steel price investigation

A worker verifies a product at a steel factory in Dalian, Liaoning province, China September 1, 2016. China Daily/via
Reuters

By Philip Blenkinsop | BRUSSELS
The European Union has launched a new investigation into whether Chinese manufacturers are selling steel into Europe at unfairly low prices, angering China which says Europe's steel problems are due to the region's own economic weakness.

The European Commission has determined that a complaint brought by EU steel makers' association Eurofer regarding certain corrosion resistant steel merits an investigation, the EU's official journal said on Friday.

The Commission also said it would start another anti-dumping investigation into certain cast iron products from China and India as well as determining whether existing duties on Chinese steel seamless pipes and tubes should continue for another five years.

The EU has already imposed duties on a wide range of steel grades to counter what EU steel producers say is a flood of steel sold at a loss due to Chinese overcapacity and partly the cause of 5,000 British job losses.

A China Commerce Ministry official said Beijing attached a "high degree of attention and concern" to the case and that Europe's steel problems were due to its own weak economic growth.

Wang Hejun, the head of the trade remedies investigation department, said in a statement on the ministry's website that Europe should rationally analyze its steel industry's problems.

"It should not adopt mistaken trade protectionist measures that limit fair market competition," he said.

The EU investigation begins just days before the 15th anniversary of China's accession to the World Trade Organization, when the country says new trade defense rules are supposed to kick in.

Until now, the EU has been able to compare Chinese prices with those of another country - in the current case Canadian prices. But, Beijing insists this should no longer be possible from Dec. 11.

If the United States, European Union, and other WTO members begin to take Chinese prices as fair market value, it will be much harder for them to challenge China's cheap exports.

The European Commission proposed last month a new way of treating China, but its proposals still await approval from the EU's 28 members and the European Parliament.

Aegis Europe, a group of European industry federations including Eurofer, said there was no legal requirement to change the way the EU treated China on Dec. 11 and that EU's partners the United States and Japan would not be doing so.

G20 governments recognized in September that steel overcapacity was a serious problem. China, the source of 50 percent of the world's steel and the largest steel consumer, has said the problem is a global one.

The EU currently has 40 anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures in place, 18 of which are on products from China. Twenty more investigations related to steel are still ongoing, including three for which provisional duties are in place.

(Reporting By Philip Blenkinsop in Brussels, Yawen Chen and Nicholas Heath in Beijing,; Editing by Greg Mahlich and Jane Merriman)

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN13Y0ZJ
 

airtel

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China should build more nuclear arms to prepare for Trump: Global Times

A Chinese man holds up a Chinese newspaper with the front page photo of US President-elect Donald Trump and the headline "Outsider counter attack" at a newsstand in Beijing. Photo: AP


Published: 4:30 PM, December 8, 2016
Updated: 4:37 PM, December 8, 2016
BEIJING — China should “significantly” increase military spending and build more nuclear weapons as a response to US President-elect Donald Trump, an editorial in the nationalistic Global Times newspaper said Thursday (Dec 8).

China should “build more strategic nuclear arms and accelerate the deployment of the DF-41 intercontinental ballistic missile” to protect its interests, should Mr Trump attempt to corner the country in an “unacceptable way”, it said.


“China’s military spending in 2017 should be augmented significantly,” it added in the print article run in both English and Chinese.

The paper is not part of the official state media, but has close ties to the ruling Communist Party.

Chinese officials are sometimes thought to use it as a rhetorical hammer, but have also admonished it for its often bombastic language.

The president-elect frequently savaged China on the campaign trail, even calling it America’s “enemy” and pledging to stand up to a country he says views the US as a pushover.

But he has also indicated he is not interested in projecting US power away from home, saying America is sick of paying to defend allies like Japan and South Korea — even suggesting they should develop their own nuclear weapons.

The editorial follows a Twitter tirade by Mr Trump earlier in the week blasting China’s trade and foreign policies, as well as a protocol-shattering decision to accept a congratulatory phone call from Taiwanese leader Tsai Ing-wen.

Beijing regards Taiwan as a rogue province awaiting unification.

In the editorial, the Global Times said: “We need to get better prepared militarily regarding the Taiwan question to ensure that those who advocate Taiwan’s independence will be punished, and take precautions in case of US provocations in the South China Sea.”

On Wednesday, Mr Trump selected Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who has close ties to Chinese President Xi Jinping dating back to the mid-1980s, as ambassador to China — potentially welcome news for Beijing, which called him an “old friend” upon receiving reports of his nomination.

Nevertheless, the state-owned China Daily newspaper remained pessimistic about the future of relations with the US.

A Thursday editorial said that though the Asian giant had thus far responded to Mr Trump with “laudable” prudence, further provocations from the unpredictable politician would jeopardise Sino-US ties.

“China has to prepare for the worst,” it said. “What has happened over the past weeks tends to suggest that Sino-US relations are facing uncertainty as never before, as Trump’s words are not necessarily more bark than bite.” AFP



http://www.todayonline.com/chinaind...-more-nuclear-arms-prepare-trump-global-times
 

airtel

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For decades, Washington has provided assistance to Tibetans in exile, which has long been of particular concern for Beijing.

In the 1960s, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) poured more than $1.7 million annually into political action, propaganda and paramilitary activities meant to destabilize China.

These operations are said to have been discontinued in the 1970s. However, between 2001 and 2014, the United States provided $320 million for assistance programs in China through the State Department and the US Agency for International Development (USAID), according to a 2014 report by the Congressional Research Service.

https://sputniknews.com/cartoons/201612081048323583-cia-dalai-lama-tibet/
 

airtel

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Donald Trump slams China as currency, trade manipulator, enters South China Sea debate
CNBC.com staff | @CNBC
Sun, 4 Dec '16 | 6:29 PM ETCNBC.com

Play Video

Donald Trump has lashed out again at China, accusing Beijing of manipulating its currency, unfairly taxing U.S. products and militarizing the South China Sea.

Tweeting on Sunday evening, the U.S. president-elect said:



Did China ask us if it was OK to devalue their currency (making it hard for our companies to compete), heavily tax our products going into.


their country (the U.S. doesn't tax them) or to build a massive military complex in the middle of the South China Sea? I don't think so!
This followed a tweet-heavy weekend, in which Trump used the social media platform to threaten a 35 percent tax on products sold in the U.S. by any domestic business that moved operations overseas. The real estate mogul had campaigned on a platform of boosting business and American jobs.

The tweets also came as Trump strained relations with China on Friday by accepting a congratulatory phone call from Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen, breaking almost four decades of U.S. foreign policy that has acknowledged Taiwan is part of China.

China considers Taiwan a renegade state that can be retaken by force at any time and Beijing has made clear its dislike of pro-independence Tsai. At the weekend, China lodged a diplomatic protest with the U.S. over the call - it wasn't clear if the protest was made directly to Trump's transition team - but blamed Taiwan for the "petty action."

The reference to the South China Sea is particularly sensitive, as the U.S. and China are locked in a battle of wills over the maritime region, which China, as well as other Asian countries, claims as its own.

In July, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague found that China'sclaims of historical rights to the region - which is a key international shipping route - were not founded on evidence and were counter to international law. The court found that Chinese efforts to create man-made islands on top of atolls and reefs, as well as its large-scale fishing in the disputed areas, were illegal.

China has refused to recognize the court's authority. Meanwhile, the U.S. had continued to assert its right to conduct naval patrols in the area.


http://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/04/dona...anipulator-enters-south-china-sea-debate.html
 

airtel

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China denies shooting down Myanmar fighter jet
By PTI | 7 Dec, 2016, 09:57 hrs IST

BEIJING: China's defence ministry has denied reports as "pure fiction" that its missiles shot down a Myanmar warplane near the Sino-Burmese border.

A widely circulated news report on Chinese Internet claimed that a Myanmar Air Force fighter jet crashed near the Sino-Burmese border on Sunday.

The report said the jet was hit by a Chinese missile when it flew over Chinese territory during its airborne raid of armed ethnic forces.

The reports quoted some analysts claiming that the PLA artillery fired warning shots at Myanmar jets that entered China's airspace and that the fleeing jet accidentally hit the shells, which led to its crash, state run Global Times reported.

The defence ministry rebuffed the analysis as fiction, the daily report said.

Fighting rages in northern Myanmar as Myanmar Air Force jets have bombed Mongkoe for four straight days.

Myanmar's Kachinland News reported that a Myanmar fighter crashed on Sunday, saying it was not clear whether the crash was due to a technical failure or an attack, the daily report said.

China is currently hosting several hundred refugees in various camps who fled due to heavy fighting between the rebels and the Myanmar military.

Since the fighting broke out last month, Chinese Foreign ministry said China will continue to follow the development of the situation and maintain communication with Myanmar.

"We strongly hope the parties in the conflict will exercise restraint and immediately halt military operations to avoid escalation of the situation," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang told media here last month.

He also called on them to take concrete measures to restore peace in the China-Myanmar border area and prevent harm to China's sovereignty as well as the lives and property of border residents.

Last year Chinese military has deployed its force along the border after five people were killed and several others wounded in firing by a Myanmar jet which was reportedly chasing Kokoang rebels in the border areas.

The main rebel force in Kokang, the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MDAA) are ethnic Chinese and once formed part of Communist Party forces in the region.

The MDAA is led by ethnic Chinese commander Peng Jiasheng who has reached a peace accord with the Myanmar government which lasted until 2009.

He again resurfaced last year prompting Myanmar to seek Chinese assistance to crackdown on his outfit.

Reports from Myanmar last year blamed Peng's return was the root cause for resumption of fighting.

Peng has denied any Chinese involvement in interviews to the official media here.



http://m.economictimes.com/news/def...-myanmar-fighter-jet/articleshow/55847660.cms



something is cooking between Burma & china .
 

airtel

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Hong Kong's Brexit ambitions: Could city ever be independent from China?
By James Griffiths, CNN

Updated 0442 GMT (1242 HKT) June 30, 2016



Hong Kong: Fears of losing freedom 02:12
Story highlights
  • Hong Kong has a great deal of autonomy from China
  • But some warn of increasing Chinese control over the city
  • This has led for calls for full self-governance or even independence
Hong Kong (CNN)Hong Kong has its own legal system, government, currency, flag and Olympic sports team.

So could the city -- officially a Special Administrative Region of China -- ever become fully independent? That's what an increasing number of people, frustrated by a stalled political reform process and perceived Chinese encroachment, are asking.
The city's leaders, and Beijing, have dismissed the calls out of hand -- with some commentators even suggesting discussion of independence could be a criminal offense. But in the wake of the UK's shock vote to leave the European Union and the increasing likelihood that Scotland and Catalonia will break away in the near future, is it so crazy to suggest that Hong Kong could go it alone?
How fugitive Hong Kong bookseller Lam Wing-kee decided to defy China


'Ten Years' predicts dark future for Hong Kong 03:03
Hong Kong and China
According to a United Nations declaration, "all peoples have the right to self-determination."
From 1960 to 1972, Hong Kong was listed alongside other colonies and territories such as Fiji and Kenya as a "non-self-governing territory" in which all steps should be taken "in order to enable them to enjoy complete independence and freedom."
Today, Fiji and Kenya are independent republics, Hong Kong is not. In 1971, the People's Republic of China joined the U.N., and the following year Hong Kong (along with neighboring Macau, then a Portuguese colony) was removed from the list on Beijing's request. In 1984, the Sino-British Joint Declaration on the handover of sovereignty over Hong Kong from the UK to China was signed, and in 1997 Hong Kong officially became a Chinese SAR.
The Joint Declaration and the city's mini-constitution, The Basic Law, guarantee Hong Kong a "high degree of autonomy" and "gradual and orderly progress" towards universal suffrage.
Perceptions that progress on the latter point has stalled in the wake of a failed attempt by the government to pass limited political reform — in which people would vote freely for the chief executive, but only from a slate of candidates chosen in effect by Beijing — has led to a surge in support for so-called "localist" groups, that advocate for greater Hong Kong autonomy and even independence.
At least seven new localist parties have been set up in the last year. In a recent by-election, Hong Kong Indigenous candidate Edward Leung won more than 15% of the vote, saying the result marked the arrival of localism as a "third power" in Hong Kong politics.

'Younger Games': Umbrella Movement leaders launch new political party

Ueentitled.jpg


How could Hong Kong go independent?


China is extremely protective of its territory, and even some that it doesn't officially control, and Beijing has reacted angrily to calls for Hong Kong independence, with one state-run newspaper saying it is a "fake proposition without any possibility of realization."
Labour Party lawmaker Cyd Ho says whether it's independence or self-determination, "Hong Kong won't be able to achieve any of that if China doesn't become a civilized nation that respects human rights."
With Beijing unlikely to play along, just how Hong Kong would go about achieving independence is unclear. The Hong Kong National Party calls for revoking Basic Law and the Sino-British Joint Declaration and establishing a new constitution, while another pro-independence party advocates for the UK to take back control over the city as a path towards stateship, according to the South China Morning Post.
Others advocate for a Brexit-style vote on the city's future. Demosisto -- a political party founded by several leaders of the Umbrella Movement, including former student activist Joshua Wong -- has called for a self-determination referendum to be held in 10 years time, in which full independence from China would be an option.
"We hope that in the future ... we can organize a civil referendum to bolster the consensus in society that Hong Kongers should have the right to decide their own future," chairman Nathan Law tells CNN.
China is a signatory to, though it has not ratified, a U.N. treaty that recognizes the right of all peoples to self-determination, including the right to "freely determine their political status."


How would independence work?




That's where it gets tricky. Hong Kong imports as much as 80% of its water supplies from China, as well as large amounts of electricity and food. Mainland China is also Hong Kong's biggest trading partner by far.
While independence wouldn't necessarily mean an end to all imports from the mainland, it's unlikely Beijing would make it easy for the city to go it alone even if it was prepared to accept its legal right to do so, itself a seemingly impossible proposition.
Advocates for Hong Kong independence usually point to Singapore as an obvious regional example of a small, self-governing city state.
Singapore, while it produces huge amounts of water itself through desalination plants, is still dependent on supplies imported from Malaysia, and expects to be so for another several decades, according to the government.
"We are not that similar to Singapore," warns Alan Leong, leader of the Civic Party, which advocates for full universal suffrage in Hong Kong but does not support independence.
"We are connected to the mainland in so many ways, not only geographically, there are blood ties between Hong Kong people and our relatives and families in the mainland, we have business and trade connections (in the mainland)."
However, he warns that "if Beijing is determined to continue with its very high-handed approach towards Hong Kong then I can bet you that the independence movement will flourish."
CNN's Elaine Yu contributed reporting.


http://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/29/asia/hong-kong-independence-china/



HongKong mange AAZADI ?:balleballe::balleballe::balleballe::balleballe::balleballe:
 
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airtel

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GOP introduces aggressive bill against China over Hong Kong independence

Jazz Shaw Posted at 10:01 am on November 17, 2016




We’ve been watching recent events unfolding in Hong Kong with understandable concern. Most prominently, their recent municipal elections resulted in two pro-independence candidates being chosen by the voters. China quickly weighed in, effectively vetoing the results and this week a court in Hong Kong agreed, vacating the offices. These moves are obviously designed to send the message that any pretense of independence for Hong Kong is illusory and China remains firmly in control.

see also:
Hillary emerges: 'I just wanted to curl up'
So that can the United States do about it? (Assuming, of course, that we should do anything.) We probably can’t do much about the election results, but in terms of the broader questions of freedom and basic human rights, Republican Senators Tom Cotton and Marco Rubio reintroduced a bill which was first proposed in early 2015. The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act will seek to directly punish Chinese and Hong Kong officials who engage in the suppression of free speech for the people of Hong Kong. (Quartz)



Two US Republican senators have introduced new legislation that would punish Hong Kong or mainland Chinese officials who suppress basic freedoms in Hong Kong in the wake of Beijing’s increasing interference into the city’s promised high autonomy.

The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act was introduced by Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Marco Rubio of Florida on Nov. 16. The legislation, which has yet been enacted into law, requires the US president to identify those “responsible for the surveillance, abduction, detention, or forced confessions of certain booksellers and journalists in Hong Kong.” The government would then freeze their assets in the country and deny them entry into the US, according to a statement.

The legislation came after Hong Kong democracy activist Joshua Wong’s Nov. 16 visit to Capitol Hill. The 20-year-old, one of the most prominent student leaders of the 2014 pro-democracy Umbrella Movement, spoke at an event organized by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), which monitors China’s human rights, and urged president-elect Donald Trump to “fully support human rights in Hong Kong.” Cotton and Rubio serve respectively as commissioner and co-chair of the CECC.

If this bill passes it will be one of the most aggressive moves against prominent leaders of authoritarian regimes that we’ve seen outside of sanctions placed on certain officials in Russia and Iran in the past decade. Identifying and freezing the western assets of Chinese and Hong Kong officials would be a major slap in the face and would make foreign relations with one of the planet’s major economic superpowers more difficult for the new administration.



So is that any reason not to do it? Not at all. If we’re truly going to walk the walk the same way we talk the talk, this sends a powerful signal to the rest of the world. It’s not the sort of thing which is likely to prompt immediate change in China’s behavior and they have tools of their own to respond in kind, but it’s a good first step. As to how it impacts the Trump administration, hey… he asked for the job. Nobody said it would be easy. Trump has spoken repeatedly about holding China to account for the bad deals which we’ve cut with them in the past. The same should apply to humanitarian questions.

Short of actually going to war with them, economic carrot and stick maneuvers such as this are one of the few tools we have available. If this bill actually makes it through Congress I hope President Trump will consider it favorably. That’s a big “if” however, because it will take some serious spine on the part of the legislative branch to pass it.


http://hotair.com/archives/2016/11/...ll-against-china-over-hong-kong-independence/
 

airtel

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  • China Should Heed Pearl Harbor's Lessons
    Dec 6, 2016 5:00 PM EST
  • By
  • The anniversary of Pearl Harbor is commemorated on Dec. 8 in Japan -- the time locally when thousands of miles away, its ships and warplanes sank much of the U.S. Pacific Fleet and launched war against America. For 75 years now, many Japanese have reflected on that moment with great remorse, appalled by the hubris and miscalculation that led to the attack. Later this month, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will personally travel to Pearl Harbor to commemorate the tragedy. Sadly, though, the leaders and citizens of another Asian power appear to have forgotten those lessons.

    Territorial Disputes

    For all the differences between Imperial Japan in the 1930s and Communist China today, I can't help but see parallels between the two. Like Japan then, China is a rising Asian nation whose thinking is informed by patriotism, suspicion of outsiders and the remnants of an inferiority complex toward the West. Its military seems not entirely constrained by civilian control. And just as Japan did in the 1930s, China is defying international opinion and challenging the maritime status quo in the western Pacific, where the U.S. defends vital sea lines of communication for all nations.

    The roots of this stance lie in a history very similar to Japan’s. Both nations suffered at the hands of Western powers. In Japan, at the end of the Edo period in 1853, American “Black Ships” sailed into Uraga Bay. U.S. pressure ultimately forced the new Meiji government to institute an “open-door policy” welcoming foreign trade and traders.

    The trauma China suffered was even more tragic and complicated. After defeat in the 19th century Opium Wars against the British, China had to surrender Hong Kong, open Chinese ports and sign a series of “unequal treaties” with Western powers that infringed on Chinese sovereignty. Even now, and unlike in Japan, the historical sense of humiliation caused by these episodes hasn’t healed among most Chinese, whether common citizens or elites.

    To at least some degree, that sense of injury still motivates the People's Liberation Army, which is determined to defend China’s sovereignty and territorial unity. In 1930s Japan, the military exploited Article 11 of the Constitution of the Japanese Empire of 1889, which stipulated, “The Emperor has the supreme command of the Army and the Navy.” The military interpreted this to mean that they were allowed an independent chain of command, reporting directly to the Emperor rather than a civilian prime minister.

    The PLA doesn’t report to China's premier or its rubber-stamp legislature either, but solely to the Chairman of the Central Military Commission -- in this case, President Xi Jinping. Unlike in Western democracies, where the tradition of civilian control of the military has a long history, it’s disturbing to hear nationalistic outbursts from Chinese generals and admirals that could easily be mistaken for policy.

    Worse, there are questions about whether a lack of oversight has contributed to a series of provocative actions in the air and on the high seas. On multiple occasions earlier this year, Chinese jets flew dangerously close to U.S. reconnaissance planes. In December 2013, PLA naval vessels “irresponsibly” harassed the USS Cowpens in the South China Sea. All this heightens the risk of an accident that could very easily lead to a shooting war.

    China is doing this -- as Japan once did -- in a manner at odds with the status quo and international consensus. The artificial islands it’s recently created by landfilling in the South China Sea seem to me to be a Chinese version of the “Manchurian Incident” of 1931 -- a pretext Japan used for asserting sovereignty over disputed areas. Last July’s International Court of Arbitration award challenging China’s island-building is a contemporary version of the Lytton Commission report, which exposed Japan’s illicit aggression.

    At the very least, China faces several of the same critical questions the Japanese government and military did in the 1930s: Can the country look past historical traumas and accept the existing regional and global order? Can it peacefully coexist with neighbors both strong and weak? Can civilian leaders control the armed forces and limit their influence over policy?

    Seventy-five years ago, Japan couldn’t answer those questions in the affirmative; China still has time to do so. It’s up to the Chinese people to decide whether they want to accept the geopolitical status quo, or try to salve their historical hurts by overturning it. Before choosing the latter course, they should do what many Japanese do at this time of year: Remember the consequences of choosing wrong.
https://www.bloomberg.com/view/arti...organic&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social
 

airtel

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A paramilitary policeman stands guard under a giant portrait of late Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong at the Tiananmen gate in Beijing, China (June 3, 2016).
Image Credit: REUTERS/Damir Sagolj



The People's Republic of the Disappeared

From black jails to residential surveillance, Beijing has been trying to normalize enforced disappearances for a decade.

By Michael Caster
December 06, 2016


On November 21, human rights defender Jiang Tianyong disappeared. He was supposed to arrive in Beijing at 6:30 am the following day but when his train pulled into the station he was not onboard. Attempting to file a missing person report at their local police station in Zhengzhou, his family was told to go to Beijing for answers. At the time of writing, Jiang’s whereabouts remain unknown.

Jiang is just the latest victim in Beijing’s terror campaign against the human rights community, which has seen the disappearance of countless individuals into a shadowy network of secret detention. Over the last decade, China has worked to normalize enforced disappearances behind a veneer of the rule of law.

Enforced Disappearances

The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances, Article 2, defines enforced disappearances as the taking of someone by the State or agents acting on behalf of the State, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the abduction or the concealment of their fate or whereabouts, which places that person outside the protection of the law. Once a person is disappeared, the risk of torture is high.

The Human Rights Council has held that an enforced disappearance can begin with either an illegal or initially legal detention. The United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances states that “there is no time limit, no matter how short, for an enforced disappearance to occur,” and that an enforced disappearance is a continuing offense as long as the fate or whereabouts of the individual in question is concealed.

Because they obviously suffer the worst, family members of the disappeared are considered victims and entitled to, inter alia, the right to truth regarding the fate of the disappeared. The State has an obligation to protect them against intimidation or reprisal. In China, however, family members of the disappeared have not only been denied their right to truth, they are often targeted by the police. The wives of the disappeared human rights lawyers Wang Quanzhang, Li Heping, Xie Yanyi, and Xie Yang have been subjected to reprisal following attempts to gain information about their husbands in addition to being the targets of more general harassment.

Wang’s wife Li Wenzu, for example, was forcibly evicted and her son was denied enrollment in elementary school following pressure from the police. In other cases family members have themselves been disappeared. One example is Wang Yu’s son Bao Zhuoxuan who, several months after his parents were disappeared, went missing following his attempt to escape into Myanmar along with two other rights defenders, who have likewise both been held in secret since October 2015.

Enforced disappearances constitute a gross violation of human rights and an international crime, so severe in fact that under certain circumstances it may amount to a crime against humanity. Article 7 of the Rome Statute, which is the basis for the International Criminal Court, holds that enforced disappearances may amount to a crime against humanity when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against a civilian population.

Unsurprisingly, there are no circumstances that permit for exceptions. Yet legislating exceptions is precisely what China has attempted, one might argue, quite systematically.

From Black Jails to Residential Surveillance at a Designated Location

In March 2003, 27-year-old migrant worker Sun Zhigang died in police custody in Guangzhou, having been beaten to death. He had been held for three days under an administrative procedure known as custody and repatriation, which allowed police to hold an individual without trial. Increasingly unpopular, it was abolished following national outcry over Sun’s death. Agents of the State would no longer be permitted to arbitrarily detain individuals or hold them in secret. Or would they?

In 2009, my former NGO, China Action, followed by others, documented numerous cases of individuals having been held in secret black jails around China in the years following the abolition of custody and repatriation. Held in State-owned hotels, the backs of restaurants, or psychiatric facilities, individuals abducted into black jails were seldom presented with charges or told how long they would be deprived of liberty; they were not permitted legal representation nor were their relatives notified of their abduction. However, unlike the abolished custody and repatriation administrative procedure, there was no flawed provision permitting the existence of black jails.

During the 2009 Universal Periodic Review before the Human Rights Council, several international NGOs and governments raised the issue of black jails, while China flatly denied their existence. But since 2009 State media has occasionally been allowed to report on their existence, some responsible individuals have been sentenced, and rights defenders have even succeeded in winning compensation for some victims. However, in 2011 China drew serious concerns from the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances for a wave of disappearances that included Teng Biao, Tang Jitian, and Jiang Tianyong.

While black jails served a purpose in maintaining the equilibrium of State violence against petitioners and human rights defenders that had been lost with the abolition of custody and repatriation, their ongoing extrajudicial presence presented an obstacle even to China’s hollow rhetoric of the rule of law. The State would need a way to mask arbitrary detention and enforced disappearance behind a veneer of legality.

China’s amended Criminal Procedure Law, which came into force on January 1, 2013, introduced, at Article 73, “Residential Surveillance at a Designated Location” (RSDL). It states, for such crimes as endangering national security, when enforcement in the residence may impede the investigation, it may be enforced in a designated location other than a detention center. It also holds that the family shall be notified within 24 hours, unless there is no way to do so. And at Article 33, it guarantees that all detained suspects have the right to a lawyer, who once requested shall be granted a meeting within 48 hours, Article 37.

Although meant to sound like soft detention, when combined with other recent laws the intention is clear: the State has sought to legislate exceptions normalizing enforced disappearances.

Three days after his July 10, 2015 abduction, police informed activist Gou Guoping’s wife that he was being held under RSDL. As China Change reports, at first she was ecstatic, believing it to be a less severe form of detention, but after she contacted the police she was told, “The case is under investigation. The whereabouts of the person is a secret.” Another common refrain is that there are no records of the detained, just as Wang Quanzhang’s wife, Li Wenzu, and lawyers were told when attempting to contact Wang in detention.

Although Article 37 guarantees the right to promptly meet with a lawyer, it also states that in national security cases this right may be revoked at the discretion of the police — a transparent exception considering RSDL is specifically designed for national security cases, among others. This is particularly troubling due to the conflation of national security crimes with human rights defense, apparent in the use of national security charges within the “709 Crackdown” on human rights lawyers beginning in July 2015. This trend is certain to continue unless the National Security Law is amended or repealed.

In 2015, China continued its attempts to systematize such exceptions. The Provisions on People’s Procuratorates’ Oversight of Residential Surveillance in a Designated Location ostensibly created oversight to prevent abuses by allowing a complaints mechanism for lawyers and family members, Article 7. While Article 19 guarantees weekly inspection by State prosecutors, it adds that such inspections must not impede police investigation.

Under the above, the police are not only afforded the right to deny lawyers and family members access under the pretext of national security but may even refuse the State prosecutor access to determine the legality of the detention or whether the individual is being ill-treated. There is no question that this places the individual outside the protection of the law, and the denial of access to lawyers or family members is tantamount to the concealment of the fate or whereabouts of the individual.

The case of Jiang Tianyong is emblematic. Since disappearing on November 21, his whereabouts remain unknown at the time of writing. His wife told the New York Times, “I hope the government could at least tell us, his family, where he is and what crimes he has committed… At least we should know his whereabouts.”

At the time of his disappearance, Jiang had been visiting the wife of another human rights lawyer, Xie Yang, who himself has been held almost entirely incommunicado since July 11, 2015, a target of the “709 Crackdown.” Afterward, Xie was held in secret RSDL for six months and formally arrested in January 2016. When he was granted a meeting with his lawyer months later, in late July, the police were clear; his lawyer was there solely to convince Xie to confess to baseless charges. Xie reported having been tortured in police custody. Now Jiang appears to have likewise been disappeared, leaving many speculating that authorities will soon announce he too has been placed under RSDL.

In its 2015 review of China, the Committee Against Torture stated, as a matter of urgency, that China should repeal “the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Law that allow suspects to be held de facto incommunicado, at a designated location, while under residential surveillance.”

China, however, appears to be doubling down on the systematization of enforced disappearances. In its so-called National Human Rights Action Plan (2016-2020), China states that “places of surveillance shall be regularized…” and promises “seriously implementing the system of residential surveillance at a designated location.” Recalling that even ostensibly legal detention can amount to an enforced disappearance, this language is no assurance. In light of the lack of authentic oversight and accountability, the trend in abuse, and the overall vagueness of the law, such statements should only be taken with increased concern. Serious changes are needed.

What Should Happen

China should immediately release all individuals held in secret under residential surveillance at a designated location and all other victims of enforced disappearance.

China has an obligation to ensure the right to non-repetition, which means eliminating the circumstances that permitted the disappearances in the first place.

The Provisions on Oversight must be immediately amended to ensure police may not deny weekly inspection by State prosecutors, who must uphold their obligations to assess the legality of detention and act on complaints by lawyers, relatives, and defendants.

China must clarify its definition and use of national security crimes. The extreme vagueness in the law allows for the State to claim anything it wants. This is doubly concerning when such allegations are part of manipulated legislation that attempts to legalize human rights violations on national security grounds. Again, international law is clear that there are no exceptions when it comes to enforced disappearances.

Most importantly, the Criminal Procedure Law must be amended or the sections that permit for disappearances must be repealed.

China must properly investigate and prosecute those responsible for perpetrating enforced disappearances. The victims of enforced disappearance, including family members, are entitled to compensation and reparation under international law.

Finally, China should ratify the Convention on Enforced Disappearances, and issue a standing invitation to the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances.


Michael Caster is a human rights advocate, researcher, and civil society consultant.


http://thediplomat.com/2016/12/the-...l&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer
 

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TAMING THE DRAGON



All warfare is based on deception – Sun Tzu, The Art of War

The Middle Kingdom has many achievements to its name, paper and gunpowder the most well known. It has been able to project an image of being inscrutable, tough, opaque and absolutely unwilling to entertain a contrary narrative. All this is true, but also true is the fact that the Chinese are more accepting of dictatorial tendencies. This faceless and gigantic mass of humanity has very little tradition of argument or balance, and absolutely no tradition of freethinking. Brilliant, hardworking and disciplined they are; consensual they are not.

China severely restricts opinion, and any opinion contrary to what the politburo deems appropriate, may find you in ‘correctional facilities’, where you will be ‘gently educated’ about how you must think. Many people do not return home after a few sessions of this ‘gentle education’.

China has the largest standing army in the world. It has the second largest economy. It is the most populous nation on earth and is a nuclear power, which occupies a pride of place on the United Nations Security Council. It has all the prerequisites of a global superpower.




And yet, China is afraid of social media.

This is why Twitter, Google, YouTube, WhatsApp and Facebook are banned in China. The Chinese government gives you alternatives, all in Chinese, and all under heavy surveillance by the China’s infamous Ministry of State Security (MSS), their premier intelligence agency.


And that begs the question; what is it about the Chinese political structure that is so shaky?

Democracy, as a workable solution, is far from perfect. But warts and all, it is still the best system of governance the world has ever seen. India took a serious leap of faith when it adopted democracy after independence. Our founding fathers showed tremendous vision. Democracy had very little going for it in the 1940s. While America was great and Britain was a superpower, democracy had thrown up luminaries like Winston Churchill and Adolf Hitler. Churchill wanted to keep India under subjugation. Hitler had similar views about the entire world.

China, on the other hand, chose the path of Mao Tse Tung. There is an apocryphal story about farmers complaining to Mao about sparrows eating grain and damaging the harvest. Mao decreed that all sparrows be killed. So, all sparrows were killed. But sparrows also eat insects that damage crops. This damaged the local ecosystem and was one of the leading reasons for massive crop failure.

In 1957, Chairman Mao launched the Great Leap Forward, a program to catapult China into the league of developed nations through rapid industrialization and collectivization. 20 to 45 million people died due to famine and other forms of artificially inflicted violence.

Hitler was responsible for as many deaths, both civilian and military; he is globally reviled, and rightly so. An argument can be made that while Hitler was pure and distilled evil; he was responsible for deaths of foreigners in a global war, apart from deaths of Jews, gypsies and other Nazi-proclaimed so-called “undesirables” within Germany. While there is no accurate figure available, Hitler is held responsible for approximately 35 million deaths.

Josef Stalin, through his purges and executions, imprisonment in gulags and forced labor was responsible for approximately 45 million deaths.

Lets look at how their nations remember them.

The Germans are ashamed of their past and abhor the very name of Hitler. The Russians have turned capitalist and Stalin is a somewhat uncomfortable reminder of their bloody past. The Chinese worship Chairman Mao.

China’s methods have changed, not the mindset. Mao caused millions to die because he wanted to rapidly industrialize China. Millions more are being severely compromised, as China races frantically to grab global pole position. China has changed the entire demography of Tibet, with regular and systematic injection of Han Chinese into the plateau. Han males marry Tibetan females. The child is loyal to China, the Chinese being famously patriarchal.

The Uighur cant pray or fast during Ramzan. Maulvis are made to dance to Chinese music during the holy days. Women wearing hijab are cautioned. Chinese authorities even have a problem with the Uighur fascination with curd. I will let that pass; I simply don’t know how to address the issue of national security being threatened by Chinese Muslims eating curd.

If curd threatens China, did Twitter ever stand a chance?

All of us have seen automobile advertisements in India, with companies claiming a particular mileage, often with the caveat “under test conditions”. This simply means that given perfect conditions, the mileage will be x. But that’s not how automobiles behave in the real world, do they? That’s China for you – always performing “under test conditions”. Every thing is government controlled, including “market forces”.

Here is a list of the top 20 Chinese companies, by revenue https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_largest_Chinese_companies. You will note that the majority of the companies are state owned. In the Chinese context it means that business is guaranteed by the state. And, the real business of the state is business.

Lifan, Loncin, Zongshen, Jialing and Qingqi – these are the top motorcycle brands in China, each valued at a billion dollars, or less. And you, my dear friend, have in all probability, never heard of any of them. Not unless you are an importer of Chinese motorcycles or motorcycle parts.

The point I am trying to make is that the entire story about the Chinese economic miracle is very real, but it is also synthetically manufactured, much like a top athlete whose competitors are chosen by a common coach. The winner is decided before the race starts.

What made China a global financial powerhouse? The 3 W’s – wisdom, will and the whip - formed the superhighway on which China’s car is zooming, albeit a bit slowly now; the wisdom of the government, the will of the Communist party and whip of the state when the citizens did not fall in line.

There are many pillars that uphold the Chinese edifice. However, the two most critical are the export-oriented economy and suppression of free will. Both are joined at the hip and cannot exist without the other.

As of now, an India-China war is an absolute improbability. If, God forbid, we do go to war (and there are no reasons why we should), we can make it extremely expensive for China to wage war, but we cannot defeat China. Neither can China defeat us. It will be a terribly expensive stalemate for both sides.

Boycotting Chinese goods is more of a moral message that hardly translates into dollars of any level of inconvenience.

If we are to tame the dragon, we must hit the dragon where it hurts.

One, we must realize that even the high internal consumption within China is not unrelated to its earnings from export. China is an export-driven economy. It invents or creates nothing new. Think of it as a massive photocopying shop. Nothing is original.

If India makes infrastructure development and creation of a manufacturing ecosystem a national priority, China will bleed. If India works very closely with Vietnam, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, Cambodia and Philippines, and builds a very close “special relationship”, China will start hemorrhaging. The day we together achieve even half the manufacturing scale of China at local costs, their story will be more or less over.

The Chinese economy is beginning to slow down. For the past two decades, it was (still is) the engine of global growth, but it left bitterness in its wake. And when Donald Trump takes issue with China about jobs and trade balance, he is not factually incorrect. The world has a problem with China, but has no alternative. Yet.

We can be that alternative, or at least lead it. India, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Philippines are in a straight line. Taiwan is up North from Philippines. This is a manufacturing belt. Together, it is a powerhouse. Many of these countries have serious problems with China. Japan is a technology powerhouse and a one time manufacturing hub. It still is in many ways globally relevant. The differences between Japanese and Chinese products are many but one feature stands out. Japanese products are global brands. The top motorcycle manufacturers in Japan are – Yamaha, Suzuki, Honda and Kawasaki. And you, dear reader, have heard of all these brands.

The need of the hour is a TG7 (Trade Group 7) comprising of all these countries, coming together to form an alternative to China. We must share funding, technology and have mutually inclusive tax regimes. Let us have better flight connectivity, priority berths at ports and infrastructure sharing. Let us have funding a low interest rates and a land bank available to kick start manufacturing. And call charges, which are rock bottom. Are all these things easy? No. Not by a long shot. But this is what must be done. It is doable.

This is war by other means.

China’s real Achilles foot is free will. Any expression of free will is treated as an attack on the sovereignty of China. It is not just Uighur who are oppressed. The Han Chinese is a little better off. Many of you will remember the massacre at Tiananmen Square in 1989. The Chinese government did not take very kindly to its citizens, especially students, demanding democracy, economic reform and end to political corruption. All that the Chinese people were asking was for them to be able to choose their own leaders and overthrow corrupt ones out; something that we take for granted in India.

The Communist Party of China rolled out battle tanks on the streets of Beijing. Between a few hundred and a thousand protesters were killed and thousands were hunted down and imprisoned. The family members of pro-democracy protestors were systematically persecuted. The revolt spread to 400 cities and towns across China before it was brutally stamped out.

There are periodic protests in Hong Kong even today. Very recently, a few elected legislators of Hong Kong refused to take an oath of loyalty to China and instead floated banners, which proclaimed, “Hong Kong is not China”.

This is what India must take advantage of, this Chinese discomfort with democracy. Give a few thousand Indian sim cards to Chinese people on the Indo-China border, sim cards that allow access to Twitter and Facebook on Indian telecom networks. Let the Chinese folks discuss whatever it is that Chinese folks discuss when they are allowed to. That will scare China more than a mountain division. China is an ideological state. Only an idea can beat an idea. Or scare it.

Why have we forgotten the Dalai Lama, the original pinprick in China’s side? The Dalai Lama has a very influential fan following across the world. From opinion makers to Hollywood, from the US State Department to the EU Parliament, his is a respected voice. India must facilitate his travel and exposure at an international level. Let him tell stories of violence and genocide in Tibet.

Money is respected and that is exactly why no one points out that China is not a democracy, and has a terrible human rights record. If the world can single out Pakistan, North Korea and Cuba, why should China answer to different standards? But it does. Unfortunate though it may be, we must understand that it is temporary.

You may say, “China will be upset”. Well, China will always be upset with someone or the other about something or the other. Its intentions are hegemonic. It covets Arunachal Pradesh. It covets trade routes and the South China Sea. It covets what Japan already has. In short, China wants to expand geography. For that it needs influence and military power, which needs money, which in turn needs trade. And China’s growth hinges mainly upon its ability to contract manufacture at basement rates.

In a population of 1.5 billion people, in a fast growing hard-core capitalist (and in theory communist) nation, there is bound to be unequal growth and disquiet. Democracy is that valve that allows people to let off steam, so that the pressure cooker does not explode. China has no democracy and the pressure cooker is heating up. Economic superstardom has ensured that the people are kept quiet; the economic miracle is visible and the moral aspirations of the people have been suppressed. But for how long?

To question is human. And Baidu, China’s answer to Google, will not answer. If you are in China, try to search for “Tiananmen Square” using Baidu. Let me make it simpler for you. Go to Baidu and type “democracy in China” and press ENTER. Some experiences are instructive.

When TG7 offers the world an alternate to China’s manufacturing Goliath, the dollar fuelled submission to, and acceptance of, absence of democracy in China will start coming apart at the seams.

The earlier acceptance amongst the Chinese of the communist party’s totalitarian ways was due to ideology and fear. After Tiananmen Square, it is money and fear. Fear alone is not enough to keep men in line. Dollars are a better argument. And together, they are unbeatable. But they are unbeatable only till the time both are holding up.

TG7 will shift the center of gravity. It will gently nudge the world towards an alternative narrative. And it will nudge China towards an era when fear was the only glue holding the Middle Kingdom together; an era when Chairman Mao was ordering the killing of sparrows.

That is when the world will realize that the dragon was always a mythical creature.

And then, the dragon will exist only in folklore.

written by Major Gaurav Arya (Veteran)
 

airtel

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Heavy smog traps 20,000 travelers at Chengdu airport
by Alex Linder in News on Dec 6, 2016 9:05 pm


Over the weekend, more than 20,000 passengers were left stranded in the Chengdu airport after the city was smothered by its worst "airpocalypse" in recent memory.

The runway was closed for a total of 10 hours on Sunday, causing 49 flights to be canceled and leaving over 20,000 travelers trapped, China News Service reports. Hopefully, they brought their shuttlecocks.

During the day, Chengdu's air quality reading ranged from 240 to 330, qualifying as "very unhealthy." Currently, the AQI remains around 200, and travelers are continuing to experience flight delays.



In the weeks to come we can likely expect more of this kind of thing now that China's furnaces are switched on for winter. Chinese airlines are notorious for delays, thanks to acts of man, god and a frequent toxic mix of the two. Last December, a "grey Christmas" at the Beijing airport prevented take-offs and landings, causing traffic chaos in the capital.

[Images via China News]
 

Mikesingh

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If the Chinese start acting funny with us on Arunachal we should openly support the independence of Hong Kong.
 

airtel

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‘Nude selfies for loans’ scandal sheds light on China’s rampant underground banking :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:


Scandal highlights murky world of loan sharks, nation’s underdeveloped financial system and absence of proper student loans, say analysts

Jane Li

[email protected]

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 07 December, 2016, 11:52am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 07 December, 2016, 10:05pm

Examples of naked selfies sent to loan sharks in China. Photo: SCMP Pictures


Details have been revealed of more than 100 more cases of young women college students in China who were forced to hand over naked selfies to ensure they would pay money back to loan sharks.:daru::daru::daru:

The China Youth Daily said it had found nude pictures and intimate videos of 167 young women, mainly aged 19 to 23 and from across the country.o_Oo_O

At least 10 gigabytes of the material has been leaked online to internet users, along with the women’s contact details and relatives’ addresses, according to the newspaper report.:pound::pound::pound:

The scandal sheds lights on the widespread use of “underground banking” in Chinese society, increasingly helped by internet technologies.

Students forced to give a ‘naked IOU’ to get a loan spark an outcry in China

Students, blue-collar workers and rural residents seldom have credit records in the reference centre of China’s central bank, a system that registers residents’ credit information and can be viewed by the public online, so cannot borrow money from banks or traditional financial institutions. More than 500 million of China’s population is estimated to be in this group.

They become easy targets of peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms and online loan sharks, as they usually have low risk awareness, are willing to accept high interest rates can be dealt with outside the law if they default on the loan.

Having long been ignored by banks and traditional financial institutions as not being “good-quality clients”, some are willing to risk much to get quick cash as they have no collateral.

Similar cases have previously made headlines across Chinese media, stirring debate about unscrupulous moneylenders, financial pressures on students and whether the women were right to hand over their pictures. The cases could run into the thousands.

Analysts also said the cases were indicative of China’s rising consumerism, underdeveloped financial system and the absence of a proper student loan system.:scared2::scared2::scared2:

The average annual growth rate for consumer loans in China, excluding mortgages, is 28 per cent, according to a report by Ping An Bank in July.:scared2::scared2::scared2::scared2:
Another IOU picture sent to a loan shark. Photo: SCMP Picures

Growing demand for loans cannot be satisfied by established banks and credit firms, pushing people needing cash to family and friends for credit or to peer-to-peer loan services and online money lenders, according to analysts.

Zhang Jun, the chief executive of P2P lending platform Pai Pai Dai, said there were almost 500 million people in China without a credit card who were yet to be covered by traditional financial services, the National Business Daily reported.

Family of Chinese student forced to give nude selfies to loan sharks have to sell home to pay off her debts

An executive with another P2P lending firm told the South China Morning Post that young Chinese consumers, who have little real assets to offer as collateral, are the main customers of online credit, which is often granted within a few hours and requires little paperwork.

The students caught up in the scandal were also attracted by the speed of borrowing money if they supplied compromising pictures.

“I got 5,000 yuan [HK$5,550] in loans in less than three minutes after my submission of nude selfies and videos of myself to the lender,” the China Youth Daily quoted one woman as saying.

The interest rate of her loan was 27 per cent a month, according to the newspaper.


http://m.scmp.com/news/china/polici...e-cases-revealed-chinese-students-forced-give


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airtel

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A Tibetan self-immolates in Tibet
December 8, 2016
Posted in Featured Flash News, Immolators, News Flash, Situation in Tibet and Tagged Central Tibetan Administration, gansu province, protests, Self-immolation, Tibet
By Staff Writer

The latest Tibetan self-immolation protest reported from Machu County (incorporated into China’s Gansu Province).

DHARAMSHALA: A Tibetan self-immolated at around 5 pm local time today (8 December) on the streets of Machu county in Tibet’s Amdo Province.

According to a video received, a body is seen engulfed in flames . A woman standing nearby is heard reciting prayers in the name of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

The video also shows police arriving at the scene and taking away the charred body.

There is no further information available on the identity of the self-immolater.
This is the 145th self-immolation in Tibet since February 2009.

It is the 145th Tibetan self-immolation since 2009.


http://tibet.net/2016/12/a-tibetan-self-immolates-in-tibet/
 

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