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Briefings

Caixin: Social Structure Study Found China’s Middle Class Collapsing

Well-known Chinese financial news media group Caixin recently reported that a recent professional social structure study called, “The Middle Class Transition Tier and The Edge Tier” found that 19.12 percent of China’s population is Middle Class. Of those, 73 percent are very close to the borderline that divides the Middle and the Lower classes. The study was based on a model established under the International Socio-Economic Index of Occupational Status (ISEI). The sample size was 683,291 employed people who are between the ages of 16 and 64. In addition to the Middle Class, China has an Upper Class of 5.62 percent of the population and a Lower Class of 75.25 percent. In the Lower Class, 4.4 percent (of the entire Chinese population) was in the “Transition Tier” that is very close to the Middle Class line, and in the Middle Class, 13.9 percent was in the “Edge Tier” that’s slightly above the same dividing line. The entire population’s 13.9 percent is 73 percent of the Middle Class population. The study also found that the bigger a city is, the more people are in the Middle Class Edge Tier. In cities with more than 10 million residents, 25.35 percent of the city’s population is in the Middle Class Edge Tier.

Source: Caixin, April 17, 2017
http://china.caixin.com/2017-04-17/101079210.html

CNA: Northeast China Environment Monitoring Stations on Alert

The primary Taiwanese news agency CNA (The Central News Agency) recently reported that the Mainland’s Ministry of Environmental Protection sent internal orders to environment monitoring stations in Northeast China to establish 24-hour on-duty monitoring schedules for radioactive pollution signs. The scope of the internal orders covers the provinces of Jilin, Liaoning, Tianjin, Hebei and Shandong. According to leaked internal information, the Chinese government expected the upcoming sixth North Korean nuclear test to be several times the scale of the fifth. There is a good possibility that the North Koreans may test some new technologies, which have a higher risk of failure. Also, over 200 high ranking military officials were called to report to the Northern Military Theater Joint Command Center. The Military Theater has already come up with several detailed combat plans to respond to the North Korean crisis.

Source: CNA, April 17, 2017
http://www.cna.com.tw/news/acn/201704170219-1.aspx

International Professional Journal Tumor Biology Retracted 107 Chinese Papers

Well-known Chinese financial news media group Caixin recently reported that the professional international journal Tumor Biology not long ago officially announced the retraction of 107 Chinese papers that had been published between 2012 and 2016, citing fraud that had occurred during the peer review process. The action was taken based on the recommendations that the global Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) had made. According to the publisher of Tumor Biology, Springer, the authors of these papers created fake email addresses using the names of specialists and experts in the field in order to provide positive reviews for these papers, without the knowledge of these specialists. The authors of these papers are from famous hospitals, universities, and institutes from several major cities in China. This is just the tip of the iceberg of the SCI (Science Citation Index) fraud that originated in China. Another example is, in 2015, the British journal BioMed Central retracted 43 papers, 41 of which were from China. Last year, Caixin sent undercover reporters to investigate the underground SCI fraud market and found that some Chinese journal networks that had ties with SCI member magazines actually conduct this type of fraud for profit.

Source: Caixin, April 21, 2017
http://china.caixin.com/2017-04-21/101081664.html

RFA: Internal Document Lists Baby Names That Are Banned for Uyghurs

According to an article from Radio Free Asia (RFA), a list of baby names has been circulating on the internet which are claimed to have a “separatist” or “religious” flavor and which the officials from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region have therefore banned. According to the article, the violators could risk not being able to register their new born babies. RFA called a local police station in Urumqi and confirmed that there is an internal regulation on what to name new born babies. The police agency told RFA that the trained personnel at the residence registration office have the authority to approve or disapprove a name. The rights group for the Uyghurs in Munich Germany expressed concern over the escalation of the persecution of the Uyghurs in China.

Source: Radio Free Asia, April 20, 2017
http://www.rfa.org/mandarin/yataibaodao/shaoshuminzu/xl1-04202017100838.html

Epoch Times: China Increases Spying Activities Overseas

Epoch Times, an overseas Chinese media, published an article that summarized the spying activities of overseas Chinese as reported in the media of Japan, Germany, and the U.S. It quoted an article published on April 17 in Shukan Taishu magazine in Japan which claimed that there could be as many as 50,000 Chinese spies in Japan. The article stated that China has built a giant spy network in Japan using Chinese students, scholars, professional workers, waiters or waitresses, and massage therapists. According to the report, some female spies would marry members of the Japan Self-Defense Forces in order to collect information.

On April 17, Les Échos, (a newspaper that the article identifies as German) published an article stating that the Department of the Interior of Hessen Germany recently issued a warning that Chinese spies are active on Linked In and Facebook where they pretend to be scientists, government officials, consultants, or human resource representatives. They target German municipalities, army officials, diplomats, scientists, and college students. The warning also requested that any suspicious activities should be reported to the security agency in Germany immediately. It is reported that there are close to 600 Chinese companies and over 10,000 Chinese citizens working in Hessen.

Meanwhile Newsweek in the U.S. recently reported that the China’s security agency has constantly been recruiting American Chinese who work in defense, security agencies or highly sensitives industries to conduct spying activities. The recent trend shows that the recruitment has expanded to Americans. Typical examples include Glenn Duffie Shriver who tried to apply for a position with the CIA and Candace Claiborne who works for the Department of State. The Epoch Times article also mentioned that in a separate publication, it covers reports on how foreign security agencies monitor activities of Chinese student associations or overseas Chinese associations that have close ties with China, while arresting or deporting those who spy for China.

Source: Epoch Times, April 17, 2017
http://www.epochtimes.com/gb/17/4/18/n9051300.htm

Duowei News: China Uses Social Media to Monitor Activities of its Own Citizens

An article that Duowei published shared the information on how WeChat spies on the activities of residents in China. The article said that the totalitarian government is always there to monitor activities of its citizens and the large sum of information collected on social media has made it easier for the government to exercise control. It also stated that Chinese authorities not only monitor public postings but also screen sensitive words on private messages and in chat rooms. In addition to WeChat and Weibo, the Chinese authorities are also capable of collecting chat conversations, using Chinese Skype versions called “Tom Skype,” as well as other types of applications. Meanwhile China is constructing a social credit system to monitor and analyze the activities and behaviors of Chinese citizen from economic, political, social, and living situations. The system is expected to be completed by 2020.  The article pointed out, “The difference between how the information collected from social media is used in Western democratic countries versus China is that there are legal regulations to protect the citizens’ private information in the West while Chinese authorities can access citizens’ private information based on the national security law and the new Internet security regulations.”

Source: Duowei, April 1, 2017
http://www.dw.com/zh/你好老大哥中国是如何通过app监控民众的/a-38249393?&zhongwen=simp

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