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China Tightens Restrictions on Its Citizens Leaving and Returning to the Country

Recently, many Chinese netizens left messages saying that when they intended to leave China, they were rejected by border inspectors, some of their passports were cut off, and even someone’s green card was cut off, too. An agent for studying abroad said that the government had suspended citizens from going abroad to study in primary and secondary schools and stopped issuing passports for primary and secondary school students to go abroad.

In response to these, China’s National Immigration Administration (CNIA) said on May 13 that the “suspension of passports and prohibiting exiting the country by cutting one’s passport or green cards are all fake news.” These are for “distorting and smearing our entry and exit management policies, intending to interfere with the legal, accurate and effective entry and exit management under the condition of normalized COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control measures.”

On May 10, the CNIA stated, “We should strictly implement strict and tight entry and exit policies, strictly restrict the non-essential exit activities of Chinese citizens, and strictly approve and issue entry and exit documents.”

Earlier on April 27, the CNIA spokesman said that it would “strictly examine and issue documents and visas, and Chinese citizens should not leave the country for non-essential and non-emergency purposes.” In addition, it will clearly continue to implement strict and tight entry and exit policies.

According to the official explanation, “non-essential” reasons include tourism and visiting relatives. The “necessary” reasons include studying abroad, being employed, doing business, or traveling for medical treatment, participating in epidemic prevention and control, or transporting of disaster relief supplies.

Chinese authorities’ restrictions on outbound travel can be dated back to November 2020, when the CNIA said it would strictly approve applications for entry and exit documents for Chinese citizens for non-essential reasons.

The strict control of entry and exit is an important part of the “Zero-COVID” policy. China’s recent stricter immigration policy was designed “to prevent foreign import of COVID” and China will not change it in the near future.

Sources:

  1. BBC News 中文, May 17, 2022.  https://www.bbc.com/zhongwen/simp/chinese-news-61462183
  2. Aboluowang, May 10, 2022. https://www.aboluowang.com/2022/0510/1746668.html

Hu Xijin Boldly Interpreted Why Xi Jinping Was not on the CCP’s Core Media

Recently there have been many discussions on the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) infight. One hot discussion was the fight between Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the CCP, and the faction of Jiang Zemin, former CCP head; and another one is the fight between Xi and Li Keqiang, China’s Premier. Chinascope is not able to verify the validity of these reports.

The Epoch Times reported that on May 17 and 18, People’s Daily, one of the CCP’s main mouthpiece, listed Li Keqiang, Wang Yang, and Li Zhanshu, one after the other, on its front page but didn’t cover Xi Jinping. That was unusual, since Xi usually receives the most coverage on the media. In the CCP’s internal factions, Li Keqiang and Wang Yang, ranked number 2 and 4 of the CCP Politburo Standing Committee members, are in the Communist Youth League faction; Li Zhanshu, ranked number 3 of the Politburo Standing Committee member, is Xi’s ally.

Hu Xijin, the former chief editor of the CCP’s mouthpiece Global Times, made an comment on his Weibo account. He highlighted in a red box an article on promoting China’s economy (which is Li Keqiang’s position) on the front page of the May 17 People’s Daily, and commented, “This is a very important signal. Follow this signal, put aside your doubts and uncertainties, and embrace new opportunities. Then you will be proved to be real business heroes and a hero of these times.” Next to Hu’s red box, were two other articles reporting Li Keqiang’s and Wang Yang’s activities. So Hu’s comments could be interpreted as having double meaning.

There are other reports on the power balancing as well. On May 11, the Wall Street Journal published an article titled, “Li Keqiang steps out of Xi Jinping’s shadow.”

On May 14, both Xinhua News Agency and the People’s Daily published the full text of Li Keqiang’s 9,000-word speech given on April 25. It is not very common to report something 20 days ago, especially publishing the full text.

On the other hand, the front pages of People’s Daily on May 15 and 16 reported Xi Jinping, without the appearance of any other senior CCP leaders.

No article about Xi Jinping appeared on the front page of the Xinhua website on May 18. Nor did the PLA Daily have one on May 18 either.

Source: Epoch Times, May 18, 2022.
https://www.epochtimes.com/b5/22/5/17/n13739454.htm

China Has Suffered Heavy Setbacks on Two Lines of the “Belt and Road” and Attempts to Find an Eastward Way

On May 04, 2022, Epoch Times reported that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has dealt a serious setback to the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) “Belt and Road,” a $4 trillion global strategic plan that it has implemented for nearly a decade. As the CCP is reluctant to condemn Russia, opposes sanctions against Russia, and cooperates with Russia with “No Limit,” the differences between the CCP and the Western free world in terms of values and between democracy and totalitarianism have been further exposed. The West’s distrust of the CCP has thus deepened, causing the West to drift further  away from China. Also, the future of China-EU trade is not optimistic. This has forced the CCP to look eastward.

The frequency and volume of “China-Europe Railway Express” have plummeted 

The “Belt and Road” mainly transports Chinese goods to Europe through the “China-Europe Railway Express (CERE)” via Russia, Belarus and Poland, which runs more than 98 percent of the China-Europe Railway Express. Since European customers are resisting the Russian invasion, many European companies do not want their products to be transported through Russian territory and have basically terminated the CERE via Russia. The frequency and volume of the CERE have dropped significantly and the flow of railroad cargo has decreased by 30 percent and, in some instances, even as much as 50 percent.

Therefore, in the short term, China must switch from rail transport to sea transport, or bypass Russia-Belarus and take the route through  the Caspian Sea and Turkey. This route, however, is immature and has limited transportation capacity, long cycle times and high prices.

The “China-Pakistan Economic Corridor” has serious security risks

The Southern route of the “Belt and Road” is the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). It goes through Pakistan to the southwestern port of Gwadar, that is under construction. Its eventual use is still pending. Much worse is that there are serious security concerns.

The fishermen of Gwadar port account for more than 70 percent of the local population and large Chinese trawlers have occupied the fishing areas of the locals and robbed the local fishermen of their jobs. The economic prosperity promised by the “China-Pakistan Economic Corridor” has not materialized and people have become poorer. The local ethnic independent armed group, the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), opposes any Chinese investment. Since November 15 last year, thousands of local people have launched a series of protests. Chinese citizens have become the targets of suicide bombings by the BLA. For example, on April 26, a suicide bombing attack against the Chinese occurred in Karachi, a city in southern Pakistan, killing three Chinese nationals. It was the work of the BLA.

The CCP tries to find a way to the east 

On April 21, in a video speech at the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2022, the CCP’s General Secretory Xi Jinping reported that it was China’s intention to work actively to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and join the Digital Economy Partnership Agreement (DEPA). Shortly after the speech, China signed a security agreement with the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific.

Katsuji Nakazawa, former China bureau chief for Nikkei Asia, determined that “China’s (the CCP’s) latest development in the Pacific is related to the stagnation of the ‘Belt and Road’ due to the Russia-Ukraine war. Its attempts to create a large-scale economic zone extending westward from Eurasia have been bogged down because of the Russian invasion and China (CCP) now has to look east.”

Related postings on Chinascope:
• Russia-Ukraine War Accelerates Deterioration of CCP’s “Belt and Road” Global Strategy – Chinascope

Source:
Epoch Times, May 4, 2022.https://www.epochtimes.com/gb/22/5/4/n13726633.htm

Beijing Highly Praised Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Election and Condemned the EU & G7

The election of the sixth-term chief executive of Hong Kong was held on May 8. The only candidate who ran for this office, Lee Ka-chiu (John Lee, 李家超) was elected with a vote of 99.16 percent of the 1,428 attending Election Committee members. China highly praised the election. The Council of the European Union and the G7 expressed their regret and their concerns. 

The CCP’s high praise of the election 

The official agents of China such as the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong, Global Times, a media affiliated with the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and others so affiliated all praised the election highly.

This shows that “patriots governing Hong Kong, ” who are deeply bolstered by all sectors of Hong Kong society, and the democratic development of Hong Kong have turned a new page after the improvement of the electoral system, which is the embodiment of quality democracy with Hong Kong characteristics

The success of the sixth-term chief executive election has further implemented the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong.” It fully demonstrated the advantages of the new electoral system and proved the new system is a good one that follows the “one country, two systems” principle and suits Hong Kong’s reality.

In addition, Lee Ka-chiu was congratulated. Lee has served Hong Kong for more than 40 years. He is very familiar with Hong Kong. In fighting the violent demonstrations against the extradition bill (in 2019). He played a key supporting role in restoring order and rebuilding confidence. His election represents the vivid practice of “patriots governing Hong Kong.”  

Hong Kong has entered the era of “patriots ruling Hong Kong.”

Comments from the EU and the G7

The Council of the European Union issued a declaration on May 8 after the Hong Kong chief executive’s election. The declaration indicated that the number of voters for the Election Committee was substantially reduced by the electoral overhaul, weakening the already limited democratic elements in the governance of Hong Kong and running counter to the commitments to greater representation enshrined in the Basic Law.  

The EU regrets this violation of democratic principles and political pluralism and sees this selection process as yet another step in the dismantling of the ‘one country, two systems’ principle. 

The EU calls on Chinese and Hong Kong authorities to abide by their national and international commitments, notably the ultimate aim of electing the Chief Executive and members of the Legislative Council by universal suffrage. 

On May 9, the foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) countries and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy issued a statement to underscore their “grave concern over the selection process for the Chief Executive in Hong Kong as part of a continued assault on political pluralism and fundamental freedoms.” 

The statement said, “Last year, the PRC and Hong Kong authorities moved away from the ultimate aim of universal suffrage as set out in Hong Kong’s Basic Law by increasing the number of non-elected members appointed to the Election Committee and dramatically curtailing the number of voters eligible to participate in the Committee elections.”

The current nomination process and resulting appointment are a stark departure from the aim of universal suffrage and further erode the ability of Hong Kongers to be represented legitimately. We are deeply concerned about this steady erosion of political and civil rights and Hong Kong’s autonomy.  

The CCP’s condemnation of the EU and theG7 

The CCP’s media, Xinhua and Global Times had some words on the Chinese Mission to the EU and the Chinese Foreign Ministry. 

Zhao Lijian, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said, at a routine press conference on Monday, that the EU couldn’t wait and “jumped out” by pointing fingers at and smearing the process, which fully exposes its true intention of interfering in China’s internal affairs.    

Zhao noted that those politicians applauded fake democracy and the pan-democratic camp that allowed the rioting and violence to rage, but they are afraid of true democracy with the implementation of the principle of “only patriots administering Hong Kong,” “Such tactics of interference won’t work in today’s Hong Kong.”   

On May 10, the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong  firmly rejected and strongly condemned the comments by the G7 and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. 

That office indicated that their statement smeared Hong Kong’s sixth-term chief executive election and attacked the Chinese central government’s policies towards Hong Kong. The words used were irresponsible remarks that only exposed their hypocrisy and their true intention of interfering in China’s internal affairs and trying to destroy Hong Kong’s stability and prosperity. The election is a successful practice of “only patriots administering Hong Kong,” and this can’t be defamed or smeared by any external forces. 

The rejection continued, saying that the ministers and the EU high representative have turned a blind eye to the structural flaws of their own democratic systems. They have wantonly attacked Hong Kong’s chief executive election and the Chinese government’s implementation of the “one country, two systems” policy, calling their statement, a serious violation of international law and the basic norms of international relations. 

The statement is full of arrogance and prejudice, ignoring the fact that the chief executive election was conducted in accordance with the law and that the result of the fair election is in line with the Hong Kong people’s aspirations.  

Behind the many problems that have emerged in Hong Kong in recent years, there is invariably the shadow of some US and Western hostile forces. The more chaotic Hong Kong becomes, the better it is in their interests.  They will continue to attempt to create problems in Hong Kong.  

“Patriots governing Hong Kong” will certainly make the U.S. and Western hostile forces as well as their proxy in Hong Kong desperate. Only when they are desperate, is there hope for Hong Kong. 

 

Sources:

  1. Council of the EU, 8 May 2022. Hong Kong: Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the European Union on the Chief Executive election held on 8 May – Consilium (europa.eu).
  2. Global Times, May 9, 2022. Hong Kong CE-elect discusses tasks for transition, successful election plunges West into hysteria, fury – Global Times.
  3. Global Times, May 9, 2022. 环球时报社评:G7再次跳出表演闹剧 (huanqiu.com).
  4. Global Times, May 9, 2022. 社评:香港团结向好,让美西方一些人绝望 (huanqiu.com)
  5. Xinhua, May 10, 2022. Liaison office of central gov’t slams G7 foreign ministers’ statement on HKSAR chief executive election-Xinhua (news.cn).
  6. U.S. Department of State, MAY 9, 2022. G7 Foreign Ministers’ Statement on the Hong Kong Chief Executive Selection – United States Department of State.

CCP’s Warning to Japan: Don’t Be the “Leading-Way-Party” for “Asia-Pacification of NATO”

On May 6, Global Times, an official media of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), published an editorial in Chinese (an English version was published on the next day), warning Japan, “Don’t Be the ‘Leading-Way-Party (Traitor)’ for the ‘Asia-Pacification of NATO.'” The article stated, “Japan shouldn’t be a promoter for NATO’s Asia-Pacific expansion.”

The editorial said, the Ukraine crisis and the geopolitical tragedy it has triggered are not enough to kill the hunger of the U.S. and some Western countries to reap political profits from the situation. Visiting Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and his British counterpart Boris Johnson agreed in principle on May 5 on a reciprocal access agreement between the Japanese Self-defense Forces and the British military. Johnson called the move “a landmark” that will strengthen “Britain’s commitment to the Indo-Pacific region.” Meanwhile, Kishida made sensational remarks. He stated that “Ukraine may be tomorrow’s East Asia,” saying that now is the time for the G7 leading nations to solidify their unity.

All these showy remarks reveal a dangerous tendency: NATO is trying to apply the tricks of “bloc politics” and “confrontation between camps” to the Asia-Pacific region. For a long time, the United Kingdom has propagated the following on several occasions, “the globalization of NATO” and the “need to preempt threats in the Indo-Pacific” and to ensure Taiwan “is able to defend itself.” Within the Asia-Pacific region, Japan is abnormally active in catering to such a scheme. It seems Tokyo wants to be the “traitorous guide” for NATO’s expansion in the Asia-Pacific region.

The United States is undoubtedly the main force behind this trend. In recent years, Washington has pushed its allies to coordinate with its strategy to look eastward. London aims to recover its declining influence by “exploring the way” for Washington. Japan wants to take advantage of the U.S. connivance to break the “shackles” of the pacifist constitution and resurrect its militarism. The Ukraine crisis is a “good dish” for some politicians who have constantly escalated their voice and who move to create regional tensions.

This editorial also expresses Beijing’s judgment on NATO. NATO makes divisions in Europe and creates crises and wars in the world. The NATO-style bloc confrontation mechanism forcibly divides regional countries into countries within the alliance and countries outside the alliance, which can only create more insecurity and cause countries to plunge into the paradox and trap of being vigilant and hostile against each other. It is definitely a poison not an antidote for easing the security anxiety and tension of regional countries. The European security “crash” proves the US-led NATO system doesn’t fit in the current era.

Now, some people want to cooperate with the United States and the West to forcibly introduce the “security model” into the Asia-Pacific region, which has proved to be a failure in Europe and has led to serious consequences. Isn’t that an intent to undermine regional peace and stability? Those countries who talk about “Ukraine may be tomorrow’s East Asia” are filled with self-interest and are serious about replicating one or more Ukrainian crises in other regions. Asian countries must remain on high alert to that.

The good situation in Asia must not be destroyed by the “new cold war.” Also. the vigilance and rejection of the “Asia-Pacification of NATO” should become a strong consensus and collective consciousness of all countries in the region.

Finally, the editorial emphasizes in particular is that Japan should not undermine the overall environment for peace and development in the region. Such an act of “inviting the wolf into the room” will harm others and harm itself.

Source: Global Times, May 06, 2022
https://opinion.huanqiu.com/article/47tzr9st2EQ, https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202205/1264992.shtml

CCP Urges All Units to Use Domestic Computers Uniformly

On May 5, 2022, the Epoch Times reported that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is implementing a “Safety and Reliability Alliance Program.” The authorities urged all government, state-owned enterprises and institutions to hand over all of their current computers and replace them with domestic computers and systems. The reason is to “prevent foreign forces from stealing China’s data.”

On May 4, some Chinese netizens posted that their working units were urged to turn in their old computers after May 1 and replace them with new computers and systems made in China. Since that system is not compatible with Windows software, a Windows emulator has to be installed. That will result in a 10-year regression in office efficiency.

A netizen from a city in western Henan Province responded that his city has already replaced their computers with all Hikvision computers, which cost more than 9,000 yuan (RMB, or $1,360) each. The new computers are very difficult to use and have very little software. In addition, the authorities require that all units in China finish the replacement within two years.

Hikvision is a Chinese video surveillance equipment manufacturer. The British Financial Times reported on May 4 that the United States is moving to impose sanctions on Hikvision. The U.S. accused it of facilitating the CCP’s internal crackdown.

Concerning the CCP’s authorities forcing enterprises and institutions to use domestic computers, some netizens said it might be related to the ” Safety and Reliability Alliance,” and is probably because of its fear of U.S. sanctions.

According to public information, the predecessor of the “Safety and Reliability Alliance” was the “Working Committee on Information Technology Application and Innovation,” which was established in 2016. On January 9, 2019, it was officially changed to the China Electronics Industry Standardization Technology Association — Safety and Reliability Working Committee, that includes 14 categories of members, with a total of 180 member units. It’s aim is to “nationalize and automatize control.”

The CCP is promoting the “Safety and Reliability Alliance” to prevent possible sanctions from the United States and Europe. The authorities require some special enterprises to realize “nationalized substitution” in 2022. In particular, all provincial governments, important municipal governments, the financial sector, and the military sector are gradually making replacements with nationalized facilities.

The “Safety and Reliability Alliance” is considered a trillion-dollar market that involves a huge industrial chain. It is expected that 40 million computers will be replaced domestically in China.

 

Source: Epoch Times, May 5, 2022.                                                                                                                                                                                           https://www.epochtimes.com/b5/22/5/4/n13727288.htm

Shanghai’s Infectious Disease Expert Calls on Authorities to Stop “Zero-COVID” Policy

On April 27, Epoch Times reported that Miao Xiaohui, a leading infectious disease expert in Shanghai, issued a post on April 23 calling on the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) authorities to stop its “zero-COVID ” policy, so as to reduce the secondary disasters that the approach has caused.

Miao was the vice president of Changzheng Hospital, which is affiliated with the Second Military Medical University of China. Concurrently he was the director of the Department of Infectious Diseases at the University. He made it clear that the “zero-COVID ” approach was ineffective and lacked any scientific basis. He said that a number of neighborhoods in Shanghai had been locked down and controlled for nearly one month, that that period exceeds the three longest incubation periods for the Omicron virus and is “completely inconsistent with the basic laws of infectious disease epidemics.”

The “zero-COVID ” approach has triggered a large number of secondary disasters. One example is that many people’s deaths should not have occurred. “Let’s stop it!” He appealed.

As early as April 8, Miao even publicly pointed out that, under the strict lockdown, the “zero-COVID ” policy will lead to a run-on medical resources. He called for concern about the additional deaths and for settling the situation as soon as possible. He believed that, during the Shanghai lock-down period, because of the run-on medical resources, a number of chronic non-infectious diseases, infectious diseases, and acute diseases, plus a 66 percent increase in the suicide rate due to psychological stress, will result in a severe number of additional deaths that should not be ignored.

(Since the lockdown of Shanghai, many hospitals have been closed. This has led citizens to lose access to basic medical services and, as a result, many have lost their lives due to the lack of timely treatment. Some people spontaneously counted the list of dead persons in Shanghai who “died not from the COVID-19, but because of it.” By April 27, the number of deaths reached 176. For example, Yu Hongsan, a senior notary at the Shanghai Oriental Justice Office, suffered an asthma attack and passed away on March 19 because an ambulance could not get to him in time. By April 28, The total death toll from COVID-19 in Shanghai was 337 .)

The need for and the cost of the “zero-COVID ” approach and the lockdown of the city should be considered carefully, Miao stated. In order to reduce the crowding for the use medical resources, he suggested that asymptomatic infected people may be isolated at home; re-checked as to whether the universal nucleic acid testing is absolutely necessary; and hospitals should not be closed completely. It should be noted especially that nucleic acid testing can increase the problem of cross-infection.

On April 24, Ding Xian, former Party Secretary of the Jing’an Branch of the Shanghai Huashan Hospital, also pointed out the shortcomings of the “zero-COVID” strategy:  “Repeated nucleic acid testing, overwhelming burdening of staff, and a most serious cross-infection pattern, where science has been thrown in the trash.”

Yin Youkuan, the former deputy director of the Department of Infectious Diseases at Huashan Hospital of Shanghai indicated in an April 22 post that the number of positive cases will increase by 3 to 4 percent for every full staff nucleic acid test done. He took a community in Shanghai as an example where originally there were no positive cases. However, after a few days of nucleic acid testing, 83 positive cases emerged. He pointed out,”That’s what the staff brought in.”

At present, Shanghai has implemented a so-called “Hard Quarantine” in a closed and controlled area. This means that the doors in the whole building are locked from the outside and residents can only move around inside their own apartments.

Source: Epoch Times, April 27, 2022.                                                                                                                                          https://www.epochtimes.com/gb/22/4/27/n13721825.htm