China Daily: According to media reports, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs R. Clarke Cooper will attend and address the virtual US-Taiwan Political Military Dialogue on the evening of January 6 EST. Do you have a comment?
Hua Chunying: We note relevant reports. The U.S. act is in serious violation of the one-China principle and the three China-US joint communiqués. We reject and condemn it.
The Taiwan question is the most important and most sensitive issue in China-US relations as it bears on China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We urge the US to abide by the one-China principle and the three China-US joint communiqués, immediately stop any form of official exchange and military ties with Taiwan to avoid causing further damage to peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and China-US relations. China will take necessary actions in response to the developments to firmly defend its sovereignty and security interests.
Beijing Youth Daily: Recently, Japanese documentary director Ryo Takeuchi filmed a documentary called “China in the Post-pandemic Era” which went viral in both China and Japan on social media platforms. As so much attention is now focusing on China and Japan enhancing mutual understanding, may I ask you what do you think of the film?
Hua Chunying: I also saw this film. This is another documentary made within a year by director Ryo Takeuchi after “Nanjing’s Anti-epidemic Scene”, “Long Time No See, Wuhan”. With scenes taken from the Nanjing Marathon, the unmanned delivery and online live-stream, the documentary records the great achievements made by China in and controlling the epidemic situation and resuming work and production. As the documentary pointed out that “at present, China’s anti-epidemic achievements and economic recovery is the best reward for all the efforts put in by the 1.4 billion people”. We commend director Takeuchi for objectively and truthfully recording this extraordinary passage China has traversed.
The world needs to know the real situation and feel the true emotions, just as what director Takeuchi conveys. Thus, we hope that more and more journalists can see, write, film and document not only with their eyes and pens, but also with hearts and humanity, so that a real and live China will be transported to everyone in every corner of the world, and people will understand and trust each other better, and friendship between China and Japan and the rest of the world will be strengthened and nurtured by a well of constant vitality.
Reuters: Brazil’s economy ministry said that it had defaulted on its penultimate capital installment to the New Development Bank because the payment has not been authorized by congress. Do you have any comment on this default?
Hua Chunying: I have no information on this very specific question. I would refer you to the competent authority.
Global Times: U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft tweeted on December 5 that the United States will always stand for human rights and they call for immediate release of people convicted by Chinese judiciary. U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback also demands release of “all those arbitrarily detained”. Do you have any comment?
Hua Chunying: Certain U.S. officials obviously care more about individual criminals in other countries than the conditions of their own people. How pathetic is that.
Human right is not an empty slogan; it is concrete and down-to-earth. The most basic human right is the right to life, and that means the right and freedom to stay healthy and safe amid the pandemic. I noted an opinion column in the New York Times, under which a comment reads that “the American dream died for me when I realized just how many of my fellow Americans valued power over justice, prejudice over fairness, and demagoguery over science.”
Pursuing a people-centered vision on human rights, the Chinese government has achieved the historic progress of lifting almost 1.4 billion people out of poverty, bringing them subsistence and then a life of moderate prosperity. The Chinese people’s life expectancy increased from 35 to 77 years. More than 800 million people were pulled out of poverty. China has built the world’s biggest systems of education, social security, medical care and institutions of democracy at the primary level. In face of the epidemic, the Chinese government puts life front and center and spare no effort to protect people’s lives, value and dignity.
The Chinese government’s pledges on human rights are serious and being honored, while some U.S. politicians’ slogans are frivolous and empty. With more than 20 million confirmed cases and 350,000 lost lives, have they ever shown any trace of heart-wringing and agony? Instead, they keep making an issue out of human rights and use that as a pretext to interfere in others’ internal affairs. They talk in ways like they were true believers in human rights, but their actions make a travesty and mockery of human rights. If the U.S. side truly cares about human rights, they should in the first place control the epidemic and protect the life and health of the American people; resolve the problem for a million people lining up for unemployment benefits in freezing wind; solve the serious racial discrimination and police violence; immediately stop illegal and unilateral sanctions and instigation of wars which led to chaos, suffering and loss of life in other countries.
CCTV: The U.S. Department of State tweeted on January 5 that the Clean Network now includes 180 telecommunications companies and dozens of leading high-tech companies. The tide is turning against Huawei and other surveillance tools of the Chinese Communist Party. What is your comment?
Hua Chunying: One cannot but be in awe that the U.S Secretary of State and Department of State possess such an unrivalled and exceptional level of self-confidence and courage that they feel no trouble and no pangs of conscience as they push new frontiers for their “lying diplomacy”. Let’s just remind them of some facts.
Despite repeated attacks from the United States on Huawei, no country or foreign company has come up with any evidence to prove that Huawei products pose threats to them. How about the U.S. side? In addition to pressuring the AT&T and other carriers for data supplies, the National Security Agency (NSA) has been using fake base stations named Dirtbox in its wiretapping programs including the Boundless Informant for more than ten years. Through Dirtbox, they simulate signals of base stations to tap into and steal data from cell-phones. As Le Monde reported, Dirtbox has enabled the United States to steal data from at least 62.5 million phones.
The US is the one that has been impenitently using mobile phone apps as surveillance tools. Leaked documents of PRISM have laid it bare that the NSA sees apps as “data mines” with huge reserves of data to be harvested and thus has been digging into these “mines” for years. Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Skype, Google Map and even Angry Birds were forced to cooperate with the agency under duress. Reports several months ago show that Ireland has asked Facebook to stop transmitting data back to the United States.
The US intelligence agency has also pioneered the move to steal secrets through app store. As revealed by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), in a project called Irritant Horn jointly initiated by the NSA and the intelligence authority of other Five Eyes countries, Google’s Play Store was compromised, and phones with Play Store app were implanted with spyware and their software vulnerabilities were exploited for the intelligence authority’s advantage. The Five Eyes have succeeded in netting massive amounts of data in this way.
The Washington Post exposed that the NSA, along with the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) of the UK, launched a surveillance program called Muscular to frequently break into the cloud servers of Google and Yahoo. They even went so far as to intercept data and direct it to the agencies’ own database, raking in hundreds of millions of personal information records.
Documents leaked by Snowden on the US surveillance program Stateroom show that the United States has been operating a highly secretive signals intelligence collection program in almost a hundred U.S. embassies and consulates worldwide. “The Filthy Hypocrisy of America’s ‘Clean’ China-Free Internet” on The Intercept points out that the US vision for a clean network means a China-free and ethno-exclusive network, a nonsensical piece of hypocrisy with a clear message: If there’s going to be a world-spanning surveillance state, it’d better be made in the USA. Another case in point is the Crypto AG scandal. The Swiss company, founded more than half a century ago and specializing in communications and information security, was actually a puppet of the CIA, and the devices it sold to over 120 countries were actually and ironically rigged so that the CIA could easily break the codes that countries used to send encrypted messages.
These are public reports and facts. Doesn’t the U.S. side have anything to say about them?
BBC: Regarding the visit of the WHO to China, I wonder if you could be more specific about the difficulty that’s been encountered. From what you said earlier, it sounds like you’re still discussing the details. Is it just a visa issue or is there still more to be agreed about how the team will operate?
Hua Chunying: I understand your concern on this issue, as well as the feelings of WHO.
There has never been any problem with China’s cooperation with WHO. We have always taken an active and open attitude. Last year, we invited WHO experts to China twice for origin-tracing cooperation and held four video conferences since October.
Relevant Chinese departments have also stayed in close cooperation with WHO, including in recent time. But you may be aware of occurrence of sporadic and cluster cases reported locally in China. Many places have entered “a state of war” against the virus, and the Chinese epidemic prevention departments and experts are devoted to the intense anti-epidemic work.
Against all the odds, in order to support international COVID-19 cooperation, China has overcome difficulties to accelerate preparatory work at home and the relevant Chinese authorities are all along in communication with WHO. As far as I know, the two sides are still in close communication on the specific date and arrangements for the visit of the international team of experts. We certainly hope that the arrangement can be finalized through communication as soon as possible.
Bloomberg: The WHO Director General has taken to Twitter to say that he’s very disappointed with the current situation. And many of the people that were planning to travel also took to Twitter and said that their travel plans have been interrupted, obviously, because they hadn’t received the Chinese visa. But specifically, could you respond to the Director General’s comments that he’s “very disappointed” with this situation?
Hua Chunying: You know China and WHO have all along maintained unimpeded communication. We also maintain close, friendly cooperation with Director-General Tedros. Like I said, we of course understand the feelings of Dr. Tedros, but as an analogy, if you want to call on someone, you need to make an appointment in advance, right?
I just mentioned that there is a trend of occurrence of both sporadic and cluster cases reported locally in China. Many places have entered “a state of war” against the virus, and relevant Chinese experts and departments have put their heart and soul into the new fight against COVID-19, because we want to contain the epidemic at the earliest time possible and prevent it from spreading. I think you can understand that.
Despite such circumstances, we highly value and are still vigorously advancing relevant cooperation. Like I mentioned just now, the two sides are still in close communication in a bid to finalize the specific date and arrangements for the WHO expert panel’s visit. We will share with you any updates in this regard.
The following question was raised after the press conference: The website of the US State Department put out an interview by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo with “Falun Gong” – backed The Epoch Times, in which he attacked China’s religion, trade and family planning policies. It is reported that The Epoch Times and “Falun Gong” were very supportive of President Trump during the general election. What is your comment?
Hua Chunying: “Falun Gong” is a heretical cult openly banned by the Chinese government. It is against humanity, science and society. The Epoch Times is an evil media organization serving the interests of the evil cult. Pompeo stooping so low as to join the ranks of the evil cult just to attack China is beneath contempt.
The Chinese side has stated its stern position many times on Pompeo’s slandering and discrediting tricks. The international community has also see through his despicable behaviors of churning out political virus and political lies.