Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Australian business threat with political innuendos had no effect on China

By China Watcher

The arrest of Stern Hu, a naturalized Australian citizen, has raised all sorts of corporate complications littered with external business risk arising mainly from a different set of political and social environment standards. But the Australian communities have chosen to openly confront the Chinese government in handling of the incident.

A disappointed senator clamored over the lack of direction in resolving the case with the Chinese government has declared his intention to push for the Australian Senate Economics Committee, to inquire into foreign investment by state-owned enterprises and sovereign wealth funds and to recommend an overhaul of foreign-investment regulations. He said that ownership of Australian businesses by state-owned enterprises is an inherently unhealthy thing and once the state-owned bodies have ownership of Australia’s resources it is even more problematic, with a direct reference to China’s international business operating model.

But he must also understand that China can also play the same “business game” and disallowed monopolistic companies like Rio Tinto and similar Aussie companies to operate in China.

The frustration is seen in the many threats and “lecturing” techniques used by the Australian government, media and the business communities to try to pressure China in releasing the detainees.

China is Australia's biggest trade partner, worth $53 billion last year, and iron ore exports injected $14 billion, powered by Rio, Australia's BHP Billiton Ltd and others.

An Australian government lawmaker and foreign policy expert commented that China's justice system had only a "facade of legality" and that Canberra had "learned the hard way" that Australia-China relations must be handled carefully. Is he implying that only the Western forms of justice system are acceptable for “white-based” societies and its people?

I like to acknowledge and agree with the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Sub-Committee of Australia's Parliament, who openly told the media that the Australian Prime Minister should not intervene with China's top leadership because the days when Western countries can demand exemption for its citizens in any Asian country are over, even in China.

The world is evolving and the new societal order is that it not going to be dominated by Western countries any more.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Comparison – Chinese police admit to killing 12 Uighur rioters

By China Watcher

It is rare that the Chinese government has admitted openly the act of killing 12 Uighur rioters during the ethnic unrest in Xinjiang recently. Anyway, the West would as usual doubted the figures and would continue to make its assertion that it is much higher, trusting the unreliable sources of the Uighur exiles (or the exiled Tibetans earlier).

I came across the two different reports on the same set of news and I want the readers to take note and tell me the difference.

Western news media

The Chinese news media reported that the Chinese police shot dead 12 "mobsters" during ethnic unrest in Urumqi on July 5, which was necessary to prevent further bloodshed. It went on to mention that three died on the spot and nine after unsuccessful treatment.

The report did not give details of the ethnicity of the deceased, but Beijing has blamed the violence in the Xinjiang regional capital that day on the Uighurs. Chinese authorities previously said the "riot" on July 5 left 192 people dead, most from China's dominant ethnic group, the Han.

The Uighurs, many of whom have complained of repression under China's 60-year rule in the huge mountainous region of Xinjiang, have accused Chinese forces of opening fire on peaceful protests. Thousands of Han Chinese went on the rampage in the following days, arming themselves with makeshift weapons and marching through Urumqi vowing vengeance against the Uighurs in some of the worst ethnic violence in China in decades.

Xinhua news agency

A senior official of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region said here Saturday Xinjiang has the confidence to erase the negative impacts of the July 5 riot "in the shortest time" in an interview with overseas reporters.

Nur Bekri, chairman of the regional government, also said in the interview that on the night of July 5, policemen in the regional capital Urumqi "resolutely" shot 12 mobsters after firing guns into the air had no effects on these "extremely vicious" thugs.

Three of them died on the spot while nine died after failing treatment.

"The police showed as much restraint as possible during the unrest. Many of them were injured and a 31-year-old officer was killed. He was hit by mobsters in the head with a stone," said Nur Bekri. He added that many innocent people were injured in the head by thugs with iron rods, stones and bricks. Knives were also used.

According to the official, the riot has left a total of 197 people dead, and most of them were innocent residents. Nur Bekri admitted that they had never expected a student parade could turn into such ferocious violence.

He said that the local government had taken timely actions to prevent emergencies as soon as they received information on the students' plan.

"But we could never imagine that the mobsters were so extremely vicious and inhumane... We really didn't expect that," he said, referring to thugs entering small alleys and lanes to attack innocent people.
He said that these perpetrators had prepared many weapons such as rods, stones and took actions in various places at the same time, which experts said was similar to the terrorist attacks that occurred in other countries recently. Nur Bekri said as the local situation is becoming more stable, "it won't be long" before the Internet was completely reopened to the public.

He said that during the riot, the Internet and cell phone messages became the main communication methods for mobsters, and it was necessary for the government to shut down the Internet to stabilize people's emotions and restore social order.

He pointed out this is a measure all countries in the world would adopt in similar situations.

Currently some professional web sites are already accessible in the region, he added.

In summary Nur Bekri told reporters the following:

1. The negative effects left by the riot would be erased "in the shortest time" and the government had the confidence to ensure the fast development of the region's economy. He said worries about the future situation of Xinjiang were completely "unnecessary".

2. Statistics show that thousands of traveling groups were cancelled after the riot, involving hundreds of thousands of tourists. He told the press that Xinjiang is capable of providing a harmonious and safe environment for tourists... The riot will not affect the opening up policy of the region and the local authority sincerely welcome businessmen from home and aboard to invest in the region.

3. He refuted foreign reports which claimed that women of Uygur were forced to go eastward to work. Such reports are completely untrue. Before these women were organized to work in other provinces, the government must get permission from their parents and consent from the individuals.The local government spent 300 million to 400 million yuan to provide free courses on technology and language for people going to work in other places. Every year, a total of 100,000 migrant workers from south Xinjiang will be organized to work in other regions to earn more money.

4. He denied that promoting mandarin Chinese in the region was aimed to eliminate or replace ethnic languages. He reiterated that other than learning the Uighur language well, it is very beneficial for ethnic people to learn mandarin and even other foreign language.as this would provide more working opportunities.

5. He revealed that the Chinese government will spend a total of 3 billion yuan rebuilding the old town area of Kashgar, a key city on the silk road whose population is mostly of Uygur ethnic group. The Uighur leader said that most of the houses in the old town were made of brick-wood and were very unstable if an earthquake occurs. Also some residents live on high slopes and their houses may collapse at any time.

Which one will give you a more detailed explanation and which one is more one-sided, bias and inflammatory?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Foreign nationals should respect Chinese laws

By China Watcher

Lately, the Australian government under pressure from its own media and the opposition has been making lots of diplomatic noises and repeatedly mentioned that the treatment of a naturalized Australian citizen (Stern Hu of Rio Tinto) who was arrested for spying and stealing state secrets may affect China's business reputation and frighten off existing and potential investors.

I applaud China’s strong stand in repudiating these “lectures” coming from Down Under and warned the Australian government very clearly not to interfere in China’s investigation and handling of the case. Hu was accused together with 3 Chinese colleagues of spying and stealing state secrets by allegedly bribing steel mill officials, which may have resulted in huge losses to China’s economic interests and security.

Foreign companies and its staff must abide and respect Chinese laws and regulations when they do business in the country. There is no double standards and everyone is equal when the law in enforced and there is no one set of laws for foreigners and another set for the Chinese residents. The independent judiciary authority in China must be respected.

I am very sure that the Chinese authorities would have sufficiently taken into consideration all negative factors and economic repercussions from this incident and they do require more “lecturing” from a “white-based” country who thinks that there are always right and that only its Western laws and practices are to be TRUSTED.

The international business community and nation states who do business with China would not only take one single incident to cast its opinion on the treatment of foreigners and investors in the country. In fact, China is now looking inwards for more domestic investments and funds coming from “friendly nations” in the Asian region. So Western investments, other than those with high technologies (which is already curb in the US) is only a handful and negligible, of which if it is reduced, would not have a major impact on its economy.

China's last quarter growth was announced at 7.1%, which is encouraging and recovery symptoms were noted. For your information, Western media had earlier pessimistically predicted that China's growth will trickled down to only 5%. So Western views are very bias and one-sided indeed.

Let me remind the Australian government that it stands to lose more if it acts tough on China. Australian strong economic performance for the past few years was due to the increased in demand for its natural minerals like iron ore and copper and dairy products like milk, cheese and butter, a big percentage coming from China. China can always turned to competitors nations in Latin America and Africa for raw materials but can Australia afford to allow its export to drop 50%?

If it is true that Rio is pulling its staff out from China, I would be very pleased if they do so. More importantly, if they are really serious about the withdrawal move, China should just blacklist them and do not allow them to come back to the country in the future.

However, in a few reports both Rio and its mining partner BHP Billiton have denied the malicious and devious Australian Financial report that iron ore shipments to China had been disrupted, by insisting that it was business as usual.

China can just ignore these ridiculous complaints and proceed to administer the correct justice based on Chinese laws if it had been infringed by the company's staff.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Chinese people views on the Xinjiang violence

I have always hold on to my belief that it is the Chinese people themselves who will decide the fate of the provinces within the People Republic of China and NOT some Caucasian journalists based in the West or worse still, some naturalized Han Chinese citizen residing in their adopted new homes overseas singing to the same tune and making wild accusations which are bordering nonsense and not even worth considering. Maybe such peoples have yet to shed off the dependence on their “white” colonial masters and have willingly assimilated a Western mentality in its writings. I am not racist but not everything from the West is right or good.

I have taken the liberty to extract 4 Chinese citizens (including the minorities) viewpoints on the Xinjiang incident and I find it more worthwhile and truthful than the many one sided and bias articles and reports from the West. Surprisingly, the comments were taken from BBC, which had been one of the most critical media on China from the Western world.

From BBC,

Harry He, tradesman, Xian says,

I used to work for a travel company, so I've travelled to Xinjiang a lot. I was totally shocked when I heard what happened there. Uighurs believe this is their land, and it is. But Han Chinese have been settling down there since the Tang dynasty, when the Silk Route opened up new cities and new opportunities.

Maybe the Chinese did rule Xinjiang with an iron first. But we are learning the lesson. Things have already got better for ethnic minorities. In some ways, they enjoy more privileges. For example I have to study really hard to get into university while it's easier for Uighurs, as there is a reserved quota for them regardless of how well they've performed.

Uighurs have a bad reputation in the rest of China. They get involved in criminal activities. They also don't speak Mandarin well. That's why many Han Chinese have little respect for them and some even hate them.

Urumqi is a wealthy, modern city. Twenty years ago you couldn't see such prosperity. All this wealth goes back into their education and social welfare. I've been reading blogs and I know that so many people want to talk about it. But I also know that if I post a comment, it will disappear in two minutes.

The government is controlling the information in order to contain the violence. Information should be released step by step, not at once. If they let people comment freely, anger and hatred will spread quickly and some Han Chinese might want to retaliate against Uighurs. I am confident that my government is doing the right thing to bring harmony.

Kalder, IT engineer, Beijing, originally from Urumqi

I belong to the Hui minority group. Back in Urumqi I've got friends from the Hui, Han and Uighur groups. Relations between us have always been fine, that's why I was totally shocked when I heard what happened earlier in the week. I don't think the rioters represent the Uighur minority. Most of the Uighurs are good people and they don't want such things to happen.
I feel that both Uighurs and Hui people are supported by the government. It's easier for us to get into university and there are more opportunities.

It's true that many Han people have come to Xinjiang in the last few years and that more Han Chinese live in Urumqi than Uighurs. But I don't mind that. If I can come to Beijing, why can't Han Chinese go to Urumqi?
I don't feel anybody is looking down on me here because I am from the Hui ethnic group. But I know that Han Chinese look down on Uighurs, because some Uighurs do bad things, like stealing, so they attract bad feelings.

The situation in Xinjiang is getting better and better. People earn more money, their life style is better than before and they are happier. The visitors from other parts of China create more, not less, opportunities. So I think that the most important thing for the future stability of Xinjiang is economic prosperity benefiting everyone.

I am a little bit worried about stability in the short term. My parents told me that they feel much safer now that the army is there. So I think that the army should stay there for a few months at least to ensure the safety of the people there.

Uighur migrant worker, Dongguan, Guangdong province

This Uighur man, who has been working in Guangdong province for five years, wanted to remain anonymous. I was shocked to hear about the recent unrest in Xinjiang. Violence is wrong, from whichever side.

It's obvious that just a handful of people took part in the rioting. My friends told me that they didn't recognise any of the guys that they saw in the TV reports - where were they from?

Attacking people and ransacking shops is definitely wrong, because it undermines national unity. I have many classmates and friends from many nationalities, and we all enjoy good relationships.
We cannot really tell what's happening from the reports on TV. We don't know what's going on behind the scenes. It must have been premeditated; otherwise, how come there were so many people?

I have many friends in Urumqi, but I haven't heard about these reports of large numbers of people at train stations and airports trying to leave.
July and August have always been popular with travellers, and people come and go. It is always difficult to get tickets during these months, and transport terminals are busy when things are normal.

Wang Bin, student, Chongqing, originally from Ningxia

I believe in what the government is saying - that the riots are caused by the World Uighur Congress, which used the Guangdong factory incident to fuel anger among Uighurs. I think that Uighurs are angry because of the failure of the government's ethnic policy. China has given many privileges to minority groups. When Uighurs break the law, for example, they don't get punished as heavily as Han Chinese would. But these privileges fail to bring true benefits to the Uighur people. As the economy develops, the gap between poor and rich within the Uighur ethnic group has become very big, just like anywhere else in China.

And some of them feel that they have been marginalised. I think this is the fundamental reason for the unrest.

In addition, it's true that there are many Han Chinese who went to Xinjiang in the last few years and in some industries there are more Han Chinese than Uighurs. So I think that Uighurs can benefit more from the prosperity of Xinjiang.

I think that the government should start treating all ethnic groups equally. There shouldn't be any preferential treatment for anyone, so that all ethnicities can live together in harmony.

I would like to thank BBC for sharing this information with us.

Friday, July 10, 2009

China should seriously review its relations with Turkey

By China Watcher

Recently, Turkey, a poor Muslim country, which is in the middle of nowhere, not European or Asian, continued its negative vibes against the Chinese people (Han Chinese) for mistreating the Uighurs, an ethnic tribe which has close cultural and linguistic ties with them.

The Deputy Prime Minister of Turkey had earlier criticized China for hunting Uighurs openly. Yesterday the Turkish Minister for Trade and Industry called for a boycott of Chinese goods to protest the crackdown in Xinjiang. He commented that since China does not respect human values we should not consume its goods. I do not know the extent of truth in the report and how much spin was put into it which was taken from one of China's most critical papers, the New York Times.

What sort of human values did this stupid Minister used as a yardstick? Since the 1980s, the Han Chinese have been treated well with better economic opportunities and adequate freedom in China and so are the other 53 ethnic races in China, excluding the rebellious Uighurs and Tibetans. Why do they continue to harbor these resentment feelings? It was reported that about 90% of the 156 deaths were Han Chinese. Why is he so disenchanted? The Turkish government throughout history has ill-treated and attempted to assimilate the Kurdish minority from the South East and now he talked about championing human values. What a big hypocrite!

These rebellious people are being heavily influenced and given hope – both from internal and external forces - to fight for independence from China – which I believe is not likely to happen in the next 50 years or so. The reason is very clear. These people cannot co-exist with the Han Chinese and it will not be possible unless they could accept the real truth that they are part of the People Republic of China. Even if China is a democratic state, I am sure every single Han Chinese would not allow this to happen. So the Western “white” society can just forget that if China has an elected government, all these problems would go away.

If the Turkish leaders are so short sighted and cannot see the bigger picture of a trading diplomacy, I would advise the Chinese government to review the current state of relations and if possible downgrade this to a consulate level.

Perhaps, if the Turkish people truly love the Uighurs so much, the Chinese government should contemplate dispatching the 8 million Uighurs to them.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Russia support demonstrated that it is a true and sincere friend to China

By China Watcher

I am pleased to note the strong Russia stance and support on the violent clashes in Xinjiang by stating unequivocally that it is purely an internal Chinese affair.

In contrast, Western governments have voiced concerns. The West nosy media is even worse taking the opportunity to bash China on the handling of its ethnic minorities and constantly emphasizing stories that the minorities rights have been trampled and that they are being discriminated economically. Repeated very often, the media continue to harp that the Uighurs are closer to its “brothers” in Central Asia than with the Han Chinese and it is only a matter of time when the frustration boils over. That’s not true. In Kazakhstan, the Kazakh and Uighurs are rivals. In Turkey and Iraq, the various ethnic groups though they share the same customs and religion are in an unending tussle over control of territories.

Rightist groups demanded an independent investigation and urged the Chinese government to address the many social ills and economic needs which were the root cause of the deadly protest. If you asked any ordinary Han Chinese in Urumqi or Kashgar, most of them would tell you that the Uighurs (as well as the Tibetans) are being given preferential treatment for university entrance, special funds to establish new retail businesses, easy accessibility to job opportunities and is not restricted to the national one-child policy. Whenever a minority and a Han Chinese commit a criminal act, the punishment would be less severe to the former. Frankly speaking, the Uighurs are actually fighting for secession from the Chinese motherland and that is the underlying reason why it has been very reluctant to accept sincere integration within the Chinese societies.

If you reviewed the racial riot in Xinjiang, it is the Uighurs which had started the “a life for a life” act. They committed acts of torching buildings, cars and murdering civilians – most of them sadly are Han Chinese. So who is the victim? The Uighurs?

The Russian foreign ministry commented that the Uighur separatists used slogans and provoked ethnic intolerance, attacked citizens and beat them, turned over cars and torched them and looted shops and other buildings. It further adds that the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region is an inalienable part of the People's Republic of China and considers that these unfortunate developments are purely an internal affair of China.

On the same day in a phone conversation with China’s foreign minister, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov expressed his condolences to the relatives of those killed.
I would like to thank Russia for its supportive stance and for being a good friend to the Chinese people.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

China should bring the full force of the law on the Uighur rebels and murderers

By China Watcher

The Uighurs, the ethnic group, in Xinjiang was the main cause of the riots in the capital, Urumqi, on Sunday. China’s CCTV showed that the Muslim Uighurs attacked and kicked Han Chinese. Some of the victims were seen with blood pouring down their faces.

To date, more than 180 people were reported dead, 90% of them were Han Chinese. It is the deadliest racial riot to strike Xinjiang, a Western province of the People Republic of China, since the country open up to the world in 1979.

I am happy to note that there are groups of Han Chinese who have taken to the streets to vent their anger and cried for revenge for the murder of their own kind. The response was seen as positive in the light of the killings of many Han Chinese. The Han Chinese protesters were observed to be carrying clubs and machetes, and there were reports that these groups have gone to the Uighurs populated areas to sent a clear warning to the Uighurs.

Even on the net, there were many angry Chinese surfers of Han Chinese origin who were asking the government to bring those trouble makers to face the full force of the law. The laws are created to maintain order and bring stability to the country. If the Uighurs had infringed the laws then the military police should ensure that these murderers and criminals are brought to justice as fast as possible. The effective administration of justice would be the best possible solution to minimize the growing “revengeful spirit” of the Han Chinese.

Western reports mainly focused on the rights of the Uighurs to protest and highlighted willingly the list of disenchantment and grievances of the Uighurs under Chinese rule. The Western media even denied that there is such a terrorist group like the Eastern Turkestan group, which was responsible for the sporadic bombings across China’s western frontier. The Uighurs protest was not peaceful, as claimed by the Uighur American Association, but it was definitely violent and as noted the damage to buses and buildings were rampant. What is sad is the loss of many Han Chinese lives. The Han Chinese were dragged out of their vehicles and some were beaten to death.

The Chinese government should ignore international human rights group demand for an independent investigation, which is seen as hidden moves to interfere in the affairs of the Chinese people. I believe no independent and truly sovereign nation like China would allow Western based organizations to conduct an investigation on Chinese soil. Do you think the British people would allow a Chinese based organization to conduct an investigation into the abuses of the British forces on Northern Ireland two decades ago?

The Chinese security forces had imposed a curfew in Urumqi and surrounding areas and had also set up checkpoints to flush out the rioters. State Television revealed that the military police have been largely a responsible unit and it showed a high degree of restrain in curbing the violence. Barricades of police using shield to protect themselves against the stream of Uighur rebels seen to be throwing stones and bricks at them. Tear gas was fired to disperse the crowds, both Han Chinese and Uighurs. The military police had arrested thousands and I have heard that those who were not involved in the brutal assault of Chinese civilians will be released after the questioning session ends.

Whether the Uighur’s violent protest was initiated or instigated by the Uighur exiles or motivated by an internal rebel organization, the most important step now is to restore law and order to the region and that all murderers will need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.