Singapore’s primary Chinese language newspaper Lianhe Zaobao recently reported that President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte said in his UN speech that The Hague International Arbitration Tribunal’s 2016 South China Sea award cannot be challenged or downplayed. The Philippines is strongly against any attempt to destroy the Tribunal’s Ruling. Duterte did not name China in his speech. China did not honor the Tribunal’s award. However, the Duterte government took a pro-China approach when it came to power in 2016 with the hope of building a better relationship with China. The Philippines largely put The Hague’s South China Sea award on hold since then. In the past several months with the Covid pandemic, the Duterte government has started to lean towards the United States. Experts expressed the belief that the foreign policies of the Philippines are apparently changing.
Source: Lianhe Zaobao, September 23, 2020
On September 23, Wang Zuoan, Director of China’s State Religious Affairs, who is also the Deputy Minister of the United Front Work Department, spoke at the 70th Anniversary of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement conference. He stated that, through the “Three-Self” patriotic movement, Chinese Christianity has completely gotten rid of the control and influence of foreign forces. He also emphasized that the “Sinification of Christianity” should be the main focus of religious work.
Wang said that he hopes that “the Chinese Christian community will focus on the following: the major changes unfolding in the world, something unseen in a century, the overall strategy of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and its earnest study, and the implementation of the important talks that Xi Jinping gave on religious issues and religious work.” Wang also stated that religious work should continuously enhance the “five identities.” This refers to the people of all ethnic groups recognizing the great motherland, the Chinese nation, Chinese culture, the Chinese Communist Party, and socialism with Chinese characteristics.
In a separate speech, Rev. Xu Xiaohong, Chairman of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement Committee, said that the committee “must always adhere to the direction of the Sinicization of Christianity in our country, and make a contribution to the realization of the Chinese dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.”
The “Three-Self” movement is a movement that Chinese Christianity created after the CCP established its power. It is against foreign interference. It means “autonomy” (independence from foreign religious organizations), “self-support” (economic independence from foreign governments or foreign religious organizations) and “self-propagation” (preached and interpreted by Chinese missionaries) of the Chinese church. The Christian church that China officially recognizes is often called the “Three-Self Church.”
Since 2016, Xi Jinping has repeatedly emphasized the “Sinicization of religion” in his speeches. In addition to “Sinicization,” Xi Jinping also emphasized guiding “religion to adapt to the socialist society” and “using socialist core values to guide and educate religious people and believers.”
1. Xinhua, September 24, 2020
2. Central News Agency. September 25, 2020
On September 25, Hua Chunying, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, once again tweeted and criticized the U.S. In the tweet, Hua wrote “200,000. This is not cold statistics but real lives. Without the right to survival, #HumanRights is only an illusion and nonsense.” At the same time, she attached a picture of a poster from the #COVIDMemorialProject with the following words, “In memory of the 200,000+ Americans who have needlessly lost their lives to COVID-19.”
After Hua’s remarks were posted on Sina Weibo, many people criticized them and made sarcastic remarks. By September 27, all the negative comments had been deleted. Below is the translation of some of those comments that were in the screenshot:
“Not sure how many deaths you (the CCP) have concealed! Have Americans been denied their human rights? Remember those people from Hubei (who died). Their names were not even reported.”
“You only care about fighting with foreign countries and don’t even care about the massive flooding in China!”
“Those who died in Wuhan do not mean anything! I prefer human rights rather than the right to survive. I own the right to survive and it has nothing to do with others.”
“The pigs in a pigpen are limited in their rights to survive. Do they have human rights?”
“The U.S. has compared human rights and freedom in the U.S. with what is going on in China (in the CCP), and China (the CCP) is now comparing its death toll with the death toll in the United States. China has taken the comparison and called its lower death toll a so-called victory. The CCP uses it as evidence that the Chinese people enjoy better human rights. Thus they deluded themselves that they have won a mental victory.”
“Auntie Hua, you are an Idiot. You will become a schizophrenic sooner or later.”
Comments were also left on twitter:
AbhiSpeaksStrait: “They have died because of the China Vi-Rus.”
Phantom： “What’s the real Chinese number?”
Jeri Carroll: “These numbers are not accurate. Most were in nursing homes. Most died from other medical conditions and it was then listed as COVID. It was fraud to the extreme in order to get federal money.”
1. Epoch Times, September 27, 2020
— Hua Chunying 华春莹 (@SpokespersonCHN) September 25, 2020
A drinking training base was established in Korla City, Xinjiang, to change the customs of local Uyghur Muslims. It was used to have the Uyghurs drink in order to determine whether have given up their faith. Drinking alcohol is not allowed in Islamic law, but in Xinjiang, not drinking alcohol is regarded as a symbol of extremism.
The government also built the Wusu Brewery in Wusu City, in the Ili Kazakh Autonomous Prefecture, Xinjiang in order to lure Muslims to drink. The Brewery holds a beer drinking contest every year, bringing together all Xinjiang Kazakhs and Uighurs in every city to hold a beer drinking contest, focusing on women.
It was previously reported that during the Lunar Chinese New Year, the Xinjiang government would distribute pork to Uighurs, Kazakhs and other Muslims in the name of “helping impoverished ethnic minorities.” Muslims are also prohibited from eating pork. They were then asked to drink alcohol and perform Han dances. The authorities threatened Muslims that if they refused to celebrate the Chinese New year in accordance with the Han tradition, they would be sent to “re-education camps.”
Source: Radio Free Asia, September 24, 2020
Recently, as the situation across the Taiwan Strait has intensified, Chinese authorities have strengthened control over people related to Taiwan. Those with immediate family members who have worked or resided in Taiwan for a long time are required to register.
A community notice that spread in the coastal city of Zhoushan, Zhejiang Province, showed that the Chinese government recently launched an investigation and requires the registration of those with immediate family members who have long-term working or residence status in Taiwan. The notice requires that, between September 22 and October 20, people with Taiwan-related relatives must go to the community Chinese Communist Party (CCP) committee office to register. The notice did not mention the purpose of the registration.
An official from the Taiwan Affairs Office in Zhejiang province confirmed with Radio Free Asia (RFA) that it was the government that required such registration. The Taiwan Affairs Office did not issue the order. He denied that the matter is a routine practice instead of a response to the recent tension across the Taiwan Strait. “If you are immediate family members of people in Taiwan, you must first tell the community.”
Mr. Wu, a legal professional, told RFA that the control of overseas relations actually became the normal state after the CCP took over China. The difference is that when the bilateral relationship is relaxed, this kind of control is loose; when the relationship is tense, the government exerts stricter control. The CCP attempts to make use of these family relations to blackmail people overseas.
Often, since 1949, the Chinese people who have immediate family members overseas have been subjected to brutal suppression in the name of “illicit (traitorous) relations with a foreign country.” After 1979, overseas family relations were, at times, the focus and target of the CCP’s united front work. Since Xi Jinping took office, overseas relations have again become sensitive.
Source: Radio Free Asia, September 24, 2020
The Comac C919, which aerospace manufacturer Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC) developed is China’s first domestically-made large passenger aircraft. It now has 815 orders from 28 customers. As the delivery date of the aircraft has been repeatedly delayed, doubts have emerged as to whether China’s aircraft industry will come under U.S. sanctions, following in the footsteps of Huawei.
Aiming to compete against the Airbus A320neo and the Boeing 737MAX, the C919 was originally scheduled to roll out its first aircraft by the end of 2015. However, it did not make its maiden flight until May 2017.
Voice of America quoted an internal document from COMAC that the company’s goal was to produce 150 C919’s annually after 2019, but did not provide a detailed schedule. Its first customer, China Eastern Airlines, is scheduled to receive the first C919 in 2021.
Shukor Yusof, founder of the aviation consulting firm Endau Analytics, has reservations about whether COMAC can deliver on time. He believes that although the aircraft is almost completed, it may not deliver until 2022 because China depends greatly on third-party suppliers from Europe and the United States. The impact of the COVID-19 epidemic is another factor.
Although China’s state media claimed that the C919 has achieved a localization rate of nearly 60 percent, the aircraft relies, to a large extent, on Western technology. Its propeller systems, flight control system, fuel system, power supply system and landing gear either use foreign products directly or come from joint ventures with foreign companies. China is mainly responsible for the design of the fuselage, wings, tail and interior.
Scott Kennedy, a scholar at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), considers that China’s dependency on the West for China’s aircraft parts and assembly is far greater than Huawei’s dependence. Due to China’s strategic path in recent years and the tension between the U.S. and China, it is very likely that the U.S. will sanction China’s aviation industry in the future.
Source: Central News Agency, September 22, 2020
The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) investigation shows that at least 15 Canadian scholars participated in Beijing’s “Thousand Talents Program.” They included experts in quantum computing, electronic engineering, vaccines, chemistry and artificial intelligence.
Professor Margaret McCuaig-Johnston of the University of Ottawa believes that this number is substantially underestimated. She said that all major Canadian universities have many research projects in which they are collaborating with China, including artificial intelligence, robotics, and quantum optics. These are areas of great interest to the Chinese military. China will pass the Canadian academic research results to the military whether in the open or privately through these collaborating scholars.
Gu Ming (a pseudonym), who once served for years as a senior executive in the Canada-China Society of Science and Technology (CCSST), told Radio Free Asia that more than two decades ago, the Chinese government established overseas bases and deployed Chinese Communist Party (CCP) organizations to learn or steal Western technology. There are CCP branches in well-known Canadian universities such as the University of Toronto and the University of British Columbia. CCSST is one of the liaison organizations. “These people (in CCSST) are here to do research and study for a Ph.D. They were paid by the state, and there are CCP branches there. China uses these associations to contact foreign research institutions and senior research scholars. Then they either invite the scientific and technologically talented to do research in China or they buy the scholar’s knowledge. If they can’t buy the knowledge they need, they try to steal it. To put it bluntly, China started employing this strategy more than 20 years ago.”
The Canadian authorities are well aware of the situation. For example, the Conference Board of Canada published a report in 2016, claiming that the “Thousand Talents Program” provides salary, research funding and other incentives to participants, who the carry out research and other activities in Chinese and overseas universities. In recent years, after discovering evidence of technology transfers, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service has discussed (this issue) with universities and other research institutions, expressing its concerns about the “Thousand Talents Program” and other foreign recruitment plans.
Source: Radio Free Asia, September 21, 2020
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) keeps attacking Miles Yu, a chief China policy adviser to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Miles Yu also addressed a panel, saying the Hong Kong experiment of one-country, two systems is a “bankrupt idea.” After having the high school that Yu attended in China chisel his name off the honor stone tablet, the CCP recently arranged a group of people of his genealogy to take his name out of their genealogical chart.
An online video posted last month showed a group of seniors in the Yu genealogy in Anhui Province. China held a meeting to denounce Miles Yu, though he does not have a direct relative living there. The meeting room hung up a banner that said, “Angrily condemn traitor Miles Yu, remove him from the genealogical chart, and drive him out of the genealogical chart.” The group announced six “crimes” that Yu had committed but the video didn’t show them.
The traditional Chinese culture emphasized a person’s heritage and genealogy. Taking a person out of the genealogical chart used to be a great humiliation for that person. However, after the CCP took control of China, it destroyed the traditional culture, so the genealogical charts do not mean much to the Chinese people nowadays. It is somehow bizarre for the CCP to use the genealogical chart to humiliate Miles Yu.
On September 19, Miles responded to this incident on Twitter:
“Taking my name off a genealogical chart （族谱？）that I have never heard of, and never cared about, seems bizarre. The farce crumbles under the weight of its absurdity.”
1. Chinascope, July 31, 2020
2. Radio France International, September 14, 2020
3. Radio France International, September 19, 2020
4. Twitter, Miles Yu’s account, September 19, 2020
Taking my name off a genealogical chart （族谱？）that I have never heard of, and never cared about, seems bizarre. The farce crumbles under the weight of its absurdity.
— 余茂春 (@MilesYu196288) September 19, 2020