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Week of November 3, 2000

Week of March 16, 2001

The U.S. and China This Week


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DOMESTIC: Judicial Officials Highlight Importance of Corruption

SUMMARY: In speeches to the National People’s Congress (NPC), China’s top two judicial officials highlighted the
importance of the struggle against corruption and acknowledged that it has not been entirely successful. Both Han Zhubin, the nation’s top prosecutor, and Xiao Yang, China’s top judge, said China has major difficulties with corrupt prosecutors, inept judges and lack of enforcement of court verdicts. Han said the state investigated more than 45,000 cases involving corruption last year, approximately 7,000 more than the previous year, and that about $566 million in stolen funds was confiscated. Nearly 1,300 judges and 500 prosecutors received punishment for violating party or administrative rules last year, according to judicial reports.

Han said criminal syndicates have infiltrated the Communist Party and law enforcement agencies. According to Xiao, criminal groups “threaten the lives and economic security of the public.?Xaio also maintained that major reforms are necessary for judicial recruitment, as unqualified people have become judges and bad judges have been allowed to stay on the bench.

Both Han and Xiao mentioned the $6 billion smuggling scandal found in Fujian Province last year, in which more than 160 officials were allegedly involved. Cheng Kejie, former deputy chairman of the parliament, was executed for his role in the scandal, while former deputy national police chief Li Jizhou is on trial for allegedly accepting bribes from smugglers. Han said Cheng’s execution would have an “effective and terrifying deterring effect.?#060;/font>

According to analysts, skepticism remains in China despite the government’s efforts. They say corruption investigations are often halted before they reach high Communist Party members.
 


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DOMESTIC: Congress Deputies Grill High Judge

SUMMARY: Deputies to the National People’s Congress (NPC) from Guangdong province grilled Xiao Yang, president
of the Supreme People’s Court, in a meeting on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the parliament. “Every year the
poor quality of officials is listed as an ongoing problem in the work reports of both the judicial and the procuratorate,?
delegate Li Yongzhong told Xiao. According to Li, only 20 percent of China’s judicial officials are college educated. Li
said all judicial officials should receive professional training as lawyers “like it is done in the West.?

Delegate Chen Lili complained of a growing difficulty in the judicial system of ignoring human rights. Chen said the
crackdown on Falun Gong is full of “sharp contradictions.?Chen quoted Deng Xiaoping as having urged Chinese to
“seize our work with both hands.?While the economy is doing well, Chen said, politics and many other social areas
need improvement.

Meanwhile, the vice chairman of Guangdong’s People’s Congress said there should be clearer regulations for the
development of an independent judiciary. In recent years NPC delegates have given the judicial system relatively low
approval ratings. Last year Premier Zhu Rongji got a 97.1% approval rating from the NPC, while the Supreme People’s
Court got a 74.4% rating and the Procuratorate got a 71.2% rating. 


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U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS: Top Official to Discuss Taiwan Arms Sales on Visit

SUMMARY: Chinese Deputy Premier Qian Qichen is expected to raise the issue of U.S. arms sales to Taiwan when he
visits the U.S. March 18-23. According to China scholar Perry Link of Princeton University, Qian will try to get the
Bush administration to move back to the Clinton Administration’s general position of seeing China as a strategic partner
more than an adversary and specific position with regard to Taiwan arms sales. Last year, President Clinton deferred
judgment on whether to sell Taiwan Arleigh Burke-class destroyers equipped with Tomahawk cruise missiles and Aegis
radar systems. The Aegis system has the potential to be part of a naval theater missile defense.

According to a Senate Foreign Relations Committee report leaked to the Washington Times, Taiwan this year is asking
for four destroyers with the Aegis systems. Because those ships would not be delivered until 2009, Taiwan is also
seeking four Kidd-class destroyers, which although less powerful than the Arleigh Burke ships would be the most
powerful ships in Taiwan’s navy.

In a recent statement to the English language China Daily, Qian said that the Taiwan issue is “not only a problem left
over by China’s civil war, it is also the result of U.S. military intervention as the United States has kept selling advanced
weapons to Taiwan.?Qian left open the prospect of lenient terms for reunification. “What we adhere to is one China
that embraces the mainland and Taiwan,?he said. “We understand the aspirations of Taiwan compatriots to maintain
the status quo.?

Qian is scheduled to meet with President Bush March 22.


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          INTERNATIONAL: Senate Committee: Taiwan in Danger

SUMMARY: A new report from staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee maintains that Taiwan badly needs
high-tech arms, training and intelligence from the United States in order to defend itself from mainland China. The
committee staff labeled America’s Taiwan policy as “outdated, dangerous?and said it could provoke a war rather than
prevent one. “It is time to admit that continuing our current policy toward Taiwan will guarantee the destruction of that
island democracy by China’s rapidly expanding military forces,?the report was quoted as saying by the Washington
Times.

Under the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, America must sell Taiwan arms to defend itself. In April, the Bush
administration will decided on what new arms to sell Taiwan. The Foreign Relations Committee staff report
recommends the establishment of direct contacts between the Taiwanese and U.S. militaries, including hot lines or
video conferencing with the Pentagon. It also recommends military training programs involving U.S. and Taiwanese
soldiers and joint military exercises between America and Taiwan.


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U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS: China Softens Position on Missile Defense

SUMMARY: China’s top arms-control negotiator has signaled that China will engage the United States in dialogue about
plans for national missile defense (NMD) and a missile defense in the Asian theater to protect American troops. Sha
Zukang, director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Department, said China is encouraged by the Bush
administration’s recent assurances that NMD is not meant to take away China’s ability to defend itself. “China
welcomes the statement, and we are ready to have dialogue and discussion with the Americans,?Sha said.

Sha said a national missile shield for the U.S. would be “unilateral nuclear expansion.?But he said China wishes to
negotiate on the issue of the U.S. protecting itself from a limited missile attack.

America and Japan have agreed to research an Asian theater missile defense. China fears such a system could be used to
defend Taiwan.  But Sha said China is not against theater missile defense to defend American troops and ships in Asia.
“There is a gray area here,?Sha said. “China is not opposed to [theater missile defense] ?to protect troops and military
bases.?

China fears, however, that if America sells Taiwan Arleigh Burke-class destroyers with Aegis radar systems, the Aegis
systems could be used as part of missile defense. “Among the arms they have sold or proposed to sell to Taiwan, Aegis
is the worst,?Sha said.

Sha’s statements precede the imminent visit to America of Chinese deputy prime minister Qian Qichen, who will meet
with President Bush. According to China experts, Sha may have intended to set a groundwork for that meeting and to
build trust between China and America. Bates Gill, a Chinese military specialist at the Brookings Institution, said of
Sha’s remarks that “This statement appears to mark a shift from full-on opposition to a willingness to engage in a more
open dialogue about the U.S.-China strategic nuclear relationship.?


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DOMESTIC: Chinese Premier Apologizes for School Explosion


SUMMARY: Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji apologized March 15 for the recent school explosion in Jiangxi province that
killed at least 42 people, most of them children. “The fact is that the State Council, and myself in particular, have
unshirkable responsibility for this event,?Zhu said. He said the State Council, China’s cabinet, had not improved school
safety as President Jiang Zemin had ordered after various deadly fires and building collapses.

However, Zhu did not change the official story that the school explosion was the work of a suicide bomber. Survivors
and relatives of the dead said the blast occurred while children in the elementary school were making firecrackers, and
this story was widely circulated on the Internet. Zhu said his investigation found that children at the school in 1999
stuffed fuses into firecrackers but that that practice had ended after an explosion in an illegal Jiangxi fireworks factory
took the lives of 33 people a year ago. Zhu said the government would “continue to investigate until everything comes
to light.?


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The U.S. and China This Week
The U.S. and China This Week

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