Chinese police gird for repression

Just two days after Beijing’s surprise announcement that it would shortly meet with aides to the Dalai Lama, the Chinese Communist party’s official mouthpiece hurled fresh invective at the exiled Tibetan leader. The April 27 People’s Daily commentary stated: “The Dalai clique have always been masters at games with words and the ideas that they have tossed about truly make the head spin… Those who split the nation are criminals to history.” The Dalai Lama’s nephew, Khedroob Thondup, a member of the Tibetan parliament-in-exile, dismissed the overture as a “ruse” designed “to deflect pressure and give false assurance to Western leaders.” (The Guardian, April 28) A story on the front page of the New York Times business section April 26, “At Trade Show, China’s Police Shop for the West’s Latest,” sported a picture of an armored vehicle on display and contained such gems as:

At the recent China International Exhibition on Police Equipment here, sponsored by the Ministry of Public Security, DuPont had a large exhibit promoting Kevlar bulletproof fabric for riot police use. Motorola was selling police radio systems as well as wireless systems for transmitting vast quantities of video surveillance data.

And with the slogan “dress to kill” on their black T-shirts, top executives from Magnum of Britain showed off their latest police boots. “Chinese police deserve the best — Magnum protects the protectors,” said Paul Brooks, the company’s president, in a speech to police officials.

So much for hypocritical Western hand-wringing about Tibet. The US, at least, does seem to have restrictions in place on export of this kind of stuff to China—but with plenty of loopholes or lax enforcement, or both:

The trade show coincided with increasing controversy in the United States over American exports of crime-control equipment to China. After the Tiananmen Square killings in 1989, Congress passed a law that remains in effect today: it bans “the export to the People’s Republic of China of any crime control or detection instruments or equipment.”

The Commerce Department drafted regulations in the early 1990s to put that ban into effect. But those initial regulations — which officials have said clearly apply to products aimed exclusively at law enforcement agencies, like fingerprint kits — paid little attention to the rising computer industry and have not been updated.

The department did an internal review last winter of the rules. It is now seeking public comment on how and whether it should update its regulations on exports of crime control and detection equipment to any country subject to restrictions.

Asked about the abundant American gear shown at the police equipment trade show, Mario Mancuso, the under secretary of commerce for industry and security, replied with a one-sentence written statement: “Enforcing U.S. regulations on crime control equipment, including the Tiananmen Square Sanctions, is a top priority, and we continually review our regulations to ensure that they effectively support our national security and foreign policy.”

Another Commerce Department official said that questions from The New York Times about American equipment exhibited at the trade show had prompted the department to begin a review of whether American laws might have been broken. The official insisted on anonymity, in keeping with a department policy of not commenting on work that might lead to law enforcement actions.

Meanwhile, crowds of Chinese students waving red flags clashed with pro-Tibet protesters and Japanese nationalists at the Olympic torch relay in Nagano, Japan, April 26. (Reuters, April 26) More than 7,000 people, including many Tibetan exiles, demonstrated in the Swiss capital Bern to demand the government receive the Dalai Lama when he visits the city later this year. (SwissInfo, April 26)

See our last post on China and Tibet.

  1. China deports activists ahead of torch arrival
    From AP, April 29:

    HONG KONG — Three pro-Tibet activists who planned to protest during Hong Kong’s leg of the Olympic torch relay were deported after they arrived at the territory’s airport Tuesday, activists said.

    A fourth person, an organizer for an independent Chinese writers’ group, was also deported.

    It was the second known instance in which activists have been denied entry ahead of the Olympic torch’s arrival in Hong Kong on Wednesday. The flame’s return to Chinese soil follows a global tour marred by protests against Beijing’s human rights record and its recent crackdown in Tibet…

    Authorities plan to deploy 3,000 officers to guard the flame, which was carried through Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, earlier Tuesday — the last international leg of the relay.

    Activists said Kate Woznow and Tsering Lama, organizers of Students for a Free Tibet, and Matt Whitticase, organizer of the Free Tibet Campaign were turned away after arriving in Hong Kong on Tuesday.

    Woznow, a Canadian, told The Associated Press she was put on a return flight to New York. Whitticase, a British citizen, was booked on a return flight to London, Free Tibet Campaign spokeswoman Claire Cooper said.

    Tsering Lama, an ethnic Tibetan Canadian citizen, was deported back to Toronto, Canada, Students for a Free Tibet spokeswoman Lhadon Tethong said.

    Separately, Zhang Yu, general secretary of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, was detained for at least seven hours at the airport before being put on a plane to Paris late Tuesday, Hong Kong Journalists Association general secretary Mak Yin-ting said Wednesday.

    Zhang, who is based in Sweden, was planning to attend a four-day writers’ and artists’ conference calling for freedom of expression in China that coincided with the torch relay, Mak said.

    The grounds for the deportations wasn’t immediately clear. Hong Kong officials have said repeatedly they won’t discuss individual cases.

    From AlJazeera, April 29:

    South Korea’s prime minister has called for “legal and diplomatic measures” to be taken against Chinese students who assaulted Korean protesters during Sunday’s Olympic torch relay through Seoul.

    Han Seung-Soo said the actions of the Chinese supporting the relay had “hurt national pride”.

    Han’s comments follow mounting anger in South Korea over Sunday’s violence in which Chinese students attacked Koreans staging protests at Beijing’s human rights record.

    The troubles in South Korea followed a string of anti-China protests on various legs of the global torch relay – intended by games organisers as a symbol of unity ahead of the opening of the Beijing games in August.

    The flame arrived in Vietnam on Tuesday after a trouble-free leg in North Korea.

    Sunday’s clashes in Seoul erupted when about 300 protesters, including North Koreans, demonstrated against China’s forced repatriation of North Korean refugees and its recent crackdown on unrest in Tibet.

    More than 6,000 Chinese demonstrators, mostly college students, had also gathered for the start of the relay in Olympic Park.

    In one clash between the groups, Chinese students were seen throwing water bottles, stones, chunks of wood and drink cans at the Koreans.

    In another incident, Chinese students surrounded and beat up a small group of protesters, witnesses said.

    “It is very regrettable that foreigners staged illegal violent protests at a time when self-restraint against violent protests is taking root under a new government,” Kim Kyung-Han, South Korea’s justice minister, told the country’s cabinet.

    1. the have a right to deport the separtist running dogs of the
      Dalai Clique. These people want to re-introduce feudal eye-gouging and will tear up the rail-road tracks and return Tibet to the 16th century. That is real agenda of Dalai clique, which is run by the CIA and Richard Gere, and its shill is Bill Weinberg. Let the Dalai shill Weinberg show he is who he claims to be and call for the release of the Tannu Tuva two.


      1. What are you talking about?
        A Google search reveals nothing for “tannu tuva two” except the similar arcana you posted last time. Do you care to explain yourself? Or is this just some kind of Zen koan or performance art?

        1. yeah, right.
          they’ve successfully “memory holed” the Tannu Tuva Two while you were busy shilling for the Dalai clique. Let this be a lesson to you.

          1. useful idiot
            your flatulent historical revisionism is typical of the han betrayers of peoples revolution
            the dalai lama explicitly endorsed freedom for the tannu tuva two