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China Responded to the Notion of China Shouldering More Responsibility on the North Korea Issue

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that Hua Chunying, the spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, commented on the North Korea issue in response to a question indicating that most Western leaders believe that China bears special responsibilities on the matter. Hua acknowledged the existence of such a belief among Western leaders. However, she asked people to study more of the history behind the North Korea issue. She stated that it would be really easy to discover that, at the core of this issue, lies a significant lack of mutual trust between the North Korean side and the U.S. – South Korea side. Hua repeated the Chinese position (that the two sides should) find a balance via peaceful talks. She also called again for a stop on both sides of further stimulating a dangerous situation. Hua concluded that China has done all it could have done and now it’s up to “other related parties” to deliver on their responsibilities.

Source: Sina, June 2, 2017

North Korean Officials: China Is within the Range of North Korea’s Nuclear Attack  (a major news media in South Korea), reported that an official from the Propaganda Incitement Department of North Korea’s Labor Party Central Committee claimed, “The recent successfully developed new rocket Hwasong-12 (Mars-12) is a nuclear transportation vehicle that can conduct attacks on the entire China.” He made the statements during a speech to the Ryanggang Provincial Party Committee members on May 20.

The speaker stated, “Mars-12 has successfully put China within our missile network,” and “(We) don’t have to fear China’s sanctions against North Korea.”

A source familiar with the situation said, “(Our media) disseminated threatening statements to China such as ‘There is no restriction to our attacks and nobody in the world can survive our attacks.” “China must have known very clearly that these rude remarks targeted itself.”


China Confirmed the Arrest of Lee Ming-cheh, a Taiwan Citizen

On May 26, An Fengshan, a spokesperson for the State Taiwan Affairs Office in mainland China confirmed that China has arrested Lee Ming-cheh, a Taiwan citizen. Lee is an employee of a Non-Government Organization and a former volunteer for the Democratic Progressive Party in Taiwan.

An Fengshan stated that Lee was involved in the crime of “subversion of state power” and thus the police from Hunan Province arrested him. “State Security took forcible measures against Lee Ming-cheh accordingly to the law. After interrogation, Lee and others admitted that they had conducted activities to subvert our state security.”

The Mainland Affairs Council in Taiwan responded that the mainland’s statement was obscure and thus did not seem convincing to the Taiwan people or to the international community.

Source: China Times, May 27, 2017

People’s Daily: Russia Is an Important Strategic Partner in Building “The Belt and Road” Together

After talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters  that China regards Russia as an important strategic partner in building “The Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-century Maritime Silk Road” (also known as “The Belt and Road Initiative”) together.

Wang said that President Vladimir Putin recently visited China to attend “The Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation” and made an important contribution to the success of the Forum. China regards Russia as an important strategic partner to build the “Belt and Road” and believes that Russia will play a unique and irreplaceable role in the process.

Source: People’s Daily, May 27, 2017

People’s Daily: The Japanese Factor in Cross-Strait Relations Will Exist for a Long Time

Wang Jian, a scholar at the Institute of Modern History at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, published an article in the Japanese Journal (2017, No. 2 issue) titled, “The Evolution of Taiwan-Japan Relations in the 21st Century,” with the subtitle, “The Structural Contradictions between Taiwan and Japan and the Factors Impacting Future Trends.” The article pointed out that since the start of the 21st century, the relationship between Taiwan and Japan has undergone a series of changes. In Chen Shui-bian’s administration, there were frequent interactions in the political and security areas. The tendency toward “jurisprudential independence” made the Taiwan crisis even more prominent. After Ma Ying-jeou took office, he started the “flexible diplomacy” and initiated the “special partnership between Taiwan and Japan Year” program. The relations between Taiwan and Japan showed an upward trend which continued after the East Japan earthquake. Today difficult-to-reconcile structural contradictions between Japan and Taiwan still remain, including fishing rights in the Douglas Reef (Okino Tori Shima), the export ban on food from five Fukushima counties to Taiwan, and the Taiwan-Japan EPA negotiations. After Tsai Ing-wen came to power, the contradictions started to “intensify.” Taiwan-Japan relations gradually come down to the reality of interests from the too high “expectations” from the past. The factors affecting the relationship such as the Sino-U.S., Sino-Japanese, Japan-U.S. and the cross-strait relations are also being adjusted accordingly, but they will have more uncertainty. From the perspective of the Taiwan DPP authorities’ choice of foreign policy, the future relationship between Taiwan and Japan will be closer. Their alliance for common interests to compete against China’s mainland is still the biggest variable.

Source: People’s Daily, May 28, 2017

Xinhua: China-Russia Oil Pipeline Reached Oil Delivery of 100 Million Tons

Xinhua recently reported that, as of May 19, the volume of oil China acquired from Russia via the China-Russia pipeline had reached 100 million tons. The Pipeline started running on January 1, 2011. The China-Russia pipeline originated at Russia’s Far East Pipeline Skovorodino Distribution Station and entered China at the Xing’an First Station in Muohe, Heilongjiang Province. The Pipeline ends in Daqing, Heilongjiang Province, with a total length of 1,000 kilometers. This pipeline completely changed the history of importing Russian oil via railway. Chinese Customs is responsible for monitoring and managing the acceptance of the imported oil, checking the personnel involved in the maintenance work, as well as coordinating communications with the importing companies. The China-Russia pipeline has so far generated an import trade volume worth of US$62.5 billion. It has also garnered import tariffs of RMB 65.7 billion (around US$9.54 billion).

Source: Xinhua, May 20, 2017

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