China, India to hold talks on border issues

 

 

 

>>  China, India to hold talks on border issues

By Qian Tong  and Liu Hua

Special representatives from China and India will meet to discuss border issues from Friday to Saturday in Beijing, a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said on Tuesday of June 25.

Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Indian National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon will attend the boundary talks, known as the 16th meeting between special representatives on Chinese-Indian border issues, according to spokeswoman Hua Chunying.

When asked to comment on the results of the previous 15 rounds of talks, Hua said that the two neighboring countries “have kept effective communication on border issue” and the border region had “generally maintained peace and stability.”

Hua quoted Chinese Premier Li Keqiang as saying during his India visit in May that, the cooperation and development between China and India constitutes the cooperation and development among more than one third of the human population.

“The growth of Chinese-Indian relations complies with common interests of both and we are willing to make efforts together with India to maintain the sound growth of bilateral ties,” she said.

The upcoming meeting is an important high-level contact after Li’s India visit. “Both sides will continue to maintain the momentum of border talks and commonly safeguard peace and tranquility along the border region in accordance with the consensus and requirements made by both leaderships,” she said.

She pointed out that the border issue “is a complicated matter left by history and both have made a long-term endeavor to tackle the problem.”

During the previous talks, the two sides had signed a political guideline to the border issue and reached initial consensus on the framework to find a solution.

“We are willing to make good use of the current mechanism and strive to seek a fair and rational solution acceptable by both on the basis of the agreements already inked,” she said.

Before reaching a final solution, efforts should be made to “maintain peace and stability along the border region and maintain the development momentum of bilateral ties,” she said.

 

 

>>  FM congratulates Chinese candidate UNIDO Director-General election

By Xu Dongcheng

A spokeswoman for China’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday of June 25 congratulated a Chinese candidate on being elected director-general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).

China’s Vice Finance Minister Li Yong was elected director-general of the UNIDO in a board session held Monday. Li will be officially appointed director-general of the UNIDO at the General Conference on June 28.

“We are here to extend our congratulations to Mr. Li, while saying thanks to all countries for their support and trust,” spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a regular press briefing.

Hua said Li has long been engaged in cooperation on international development and has a good professional background as well as rich experiences.

“We believe Mr. Li is able to lead the UNIDO Secretariat to better serve all member states, while boosting sustainable development and international industrial development cooperation at the same time,” she said.

Hua noted that the Chinese government places great importance on the UNIDO and has cooperated with the organization effectively.

The Chinese government will support the work of the new director-general, so as to promote the UNIDO’s role in global industrial development, she added.

 

 

>>  China’s registered drug users top 2 mln

By Ren Ke, Tian Ying and Yan Hao

China’s Ministry of Public Security (MPS) said on Tuesday of June 25 that the country’s number of registered drug users had reached 2.14 million by the end of March.

About 83.6 percent of those drug users are male. In terms of age, over half of the country’s registered drug users are aged 19 to 35, 44.3 percent are 36 to 59, 0.7 percent are under 18 and 0.6 percent are over 60.

Based on an analysis of data collected over the past three years, the percentage of drug users addicted to opioids fell from 70.5 percent in 2010 to 60.6 percent in 2012, according to the ministry.

Another change involved a rise in the number of synthetic drug users. This group accounted for 72.6 percent of the total registered drug users in 2012, up from 55.6 percent in 2010.

Meanwhile, synthetic drug abuse rates are higher among younger users, the ministry said, adding that 86.5 percent of drug users under 18 abuse synthetic drugs.

Liu Yuejin, the head of the ministry’s drug control bureau, told Xinhua that China’s police forces cracked 122,000 drug-related cases in 2012 and apprehended a total of 133,000 suspects, marking year-on-year increases of 19.8 percent and 18.1 percent, respectively.

Of 45.1 tonnes of seized drugs, more than 16 tonnes were new types, Liu said, adding that drug traffickers have used not only traditional highways and railways but also aircraft, boats and postal services for transporting illicit substances.

Liu stressed that since China is close to two of the world’s major drug sources, the Golden Triangle and the Golden Crescent, the country is enhancing cooperation with foreign countries and regions on joint anti-drug campaigns.

China has established a law enforcement cooperation mechanism with Laos, Myanmar and Thailand in the Mekong River area, which has helped the four countries crack 1,037 drug cases and arrest more than 1,300 suspects in their latest joint operation.

China has also carried out effective anti-drug cooperation with the United States, Russia, Australia, Canada, the European Union and ASEAN and Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states.

Minister of Public Security Guo Shengkun said Tuesday that police should encourage and mobilize the general public to actively participate in the prevention of, and the crack down on, drug-related illegalities.

The police’s anti-drug campaigns should ensure social stability and boost people’s sense of security, Guo said.

The MPS also announced that Internet-based drug sales are on the rise in China.

Police across the nation have joined efforts to crack down on such online activities by sharing information and jointly investigating and verifying information, according to the MPS.

For drug users using the Internet to buy or discuss drug-related topics like purchasing, police authorities will mete out differentiated punishments. Criminal sentences will be issued to organizers and ringleaders, while addicts will be subject to drug education and rehab, the MPS said.

In October 2011, Chinese police arrested 12,125 suspects in a nationwide campaign against Internet-based drug sales and activities, and some criminal suspects were found to have used an online video platform to conduct sales and gather drug addicts.

In a bid to educate drug users and help them live drug-free lives, the country registers drug users and arranges regular police visits with them.

 

 

>>  China to include App Store, Taobao, Amazon in supervision plan

By Wang Xiaopeng and Qu Jing

The National Copyright Administration said on Tuesday of June 25 that it will add Apple’s App Store, Taobao and Amazon to its copyright supervision plan in this year’s campaign against online piracy.

These online platforms will be required to report on their measures for protecting copyrights and handling complaints filed by title holders, according to a statement issued by the administration.

The administration will also extend its supervision to music videos for the first time. Major video portals like Baidu, Tencent and Sina have been included in an initial list of 24 websites to be supervised.

A four-month campaign against online copyright infringement and piracy will be launched in late June.

Officials with the administration said the campaign will crack down on violations such as uploading and disseminating content without relevant permits and selling pirated products via e-commerce platforms.

Initiated in 2005, the annual campaign is jointly carried out by the administration and the Ministry of Public Security, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the State Internet Information Office.

Statistics from the administration show that from 2005 to 2012, authorities across the country investigated 4,051 cases of online copyright infringement and piracy. Of the total, 299 cases were transferred to judicial authorities for handling.

 

 

>>  World’s thinnest smartphone unveiled in Spain

 

Spanish telecommunications company Telefonica and China’s Huawei on Tuesday of June 25 unveiled its latest smartphone, billed as the world’s thinnest, in Spain.

Measuring 6.18 mm and weighing 120 grams, the Ascend P6 will hit the markets on July 8 for a price of 14.52 euros (19.06 U.S. dollars) a month for 24 months.

The new model has a 5-megapixels front camera and 8-megapixel rear camera, which also allows recording video and taking panoramic pictures, while applying the latest sound technology provided by Dolby that plays multimedia content with 5.1 surround sound.

Huawei is a leading global information and communications technology provider. At the end of 2012, it provided devices to more than 500 operators worldwide.

 

>>  CPC to prevent officials enjoying excessive benefits

By Tian Ying

The Communist Party of China (CPC) will work to prevent officials from enjoying excessive benefits by standardizing their welfare entitlement, according to a special conference that closed on Tuesday of June 25.

The Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee held a conference, from June 22 to 25, on implementing the “eight-point” rule to fight bureaucratism and formalism. The meeting was presided over by General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee Xi Jinping.

The conference required governments at all levels to standardize officials’ entitlement to offices, housing, cars, secretaries, public receptions, guards, social welfare and vacations so that no one enjoys excessive benefits; and see to that no official gives or accepts gifts.

The conference also called on efforts to perfect the official performance evaluation system and let it drive changes in work style. Besides, a promotion mechanism should be put into place where officials get promoted for good work style, and warned or punished for work style misconduct.

Xi said the conference was a cordial exchange of ideas.

 

 

>>  Bureaucracy-busting campaign effective: CPC Politburo

By Guo Likun

A rule introduced by the Communist Party of China (CPC) leadership last year to fight bureaucracy and formalism has been effective, the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau said in a statement on Tuesday of June 25.

Members of the 25-member Political Bureau have conscientiously and earnestly implemented the rule, and the move has been effective in terms of simplifying meetings and speeches, standardizing leaders’ overseas visits, improving news coverage of leaders’ work, and exercising thrift, the statement said.

The new rule will help to curb pomp, ceremony, unnecessary meetings and extravagance, while improving the Party’s work styles and boosting the CPC’s prestige, according to the statement.

The Political Bureau urged for the rule to be better carried out in the future, vowing “no exception” when implementing relevant regulations.

“Countermeasures aiming to dodge these rules should be resolutely rectified,” the statement said.

 

 

>>  CPC politburo conducts criticism, self criticism

By Guo Likun

Top leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) have conducted criticism and self criticism during a just concluded meeting, in a bid to set an example for others in the Party’s campaign to strengthen ties between its members and the people.

The Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee held a special conference from June 22 to 25, which was presided over by General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee Xi Jinping.

Political bureau members should “implement the dos before asking others to do so, and certainly do not do something themselves if they don’t want others to do it,” said a statement issued after the conference.

This is “a basic requirement” for the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau to play the leading role, according to the statement, which added that the political bureau should take the lead in improving the Party’s work styles.

The conference was held soon after the CPC launched a year-long “thorough cleanup” of undesirable work styles such as formalism, bureaucracy, hedonism and extravagance.

Party members are required to “look in the mirror, straighten their attire, take a bath and seek remedies,” or more straightforward, to reflect on their own practices and correct any misbehavior, so as to form closer ties with the people.

During the just-concluded conference, political bureau members discussed measures to enhance efforts to improve work styles, and examined their own conduct to see whether they comply with rules for the fight against bureaucracy and formalism, which were introduced by the new CPC leadership late last year.

 

>>  Boss held hostage over labor dispute in Beijing

By Cao Kai and Zhao Wanwei

An American executive has been held hostage for four days in his factory in a suburb of Beijing over a labor dispute, local authorities said on Tuesday of June 25.

Chip Starnes, president of Specialty Medical Supplies Beijing Co., Ltd, is being held by about 100 workers demanding pay at its 10-year-old factory in Huairou District. He has been held there since Friday afternoon, according to a statement from the district government’s publicity department.

“It’s a dispute. I’ve laid off the final 30 workers of one segment of our business, injection molding,” the Beijing News quoted Starnes as saying.

“We’ve closed that down now. It took us nine months to do that,” he said.

Starnes is not allowed out of the factory compound but can walk within the grounds in the daytime.

The company is closing its injection molding division and moving the factory to India, according to Starnes.

Some machines of the alcohol pad division, another division of the company, have also been packed and are ready to be transported.

Workers feared the company would move the equipment at the weekend without informing them and would not pay two months worth of salary that is owed, which led to their collective action on Friday, according to the statement.

Starnes has held several rounds of talks with the workers at meeting rooms and in the factory compound with mediation from the district labor administration and labor union.

An agreement is yet to be reached.

The factory has suspended production and all the equipment has been packed for asset evaluation. The company has not bought any materials for production at present, a deputy general manager of the company surnamed Huang was quoted in the Beijing News.

“The workers are in a panic. They feel the boss is likely to flee,” said Huang.

The company is also involved in a wage arrears dispute worth 2.7 million yuan (436,893 U.S. dollars), said Huang.

 

 

>>  HK keeps aviation passenger fuel surcharges unchanged

By Zhang Yashi and Hu Tao

Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department on Tuesday of June 25 approved the passenger fuel surcharges for July for the period from July 1 to 31.

The maximum levels of fuel surcharges for July will be maintained at 200 HK dollars (about 25.77 U.S. dollars) for short-haul flights and 859 HK dollars for long-haul flights. The applicable surcharge levels are based on the ticket issue date.

Passenger fuel surcharges seek to allow airlines to partially cover the increase in operational costs due to fluctuations in aviation fuel prices.

The surcharges are reviewed regularly by the department. The last review was done in May when the maximum surcharge levels approved by the CAD were 200 HK dollars for short-haul flights and 859 HK dollars for long-haul flights.

 

>>  PetroChina unveils EIA report on Yunnan refinery

By Li Meng, Wang Yan and Qiang Lijing

China’s largest oil and natural gas producer PetroChina released an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report on its refinery in Kunming on Tuesday of June 25.

The refinery, in the capital of southwest China’s Yunnan Province, will have an annual processing capacity of 10 million tonnes and is expected to open in 2014.

The EIA report comes just over a month after Kunming residents aired their objections and doubts over the planned oil refinery project as they believe it may pose a threat to the local environment.

The public will be allowed to read the report in an exhibition hall in Ninghu Park in the county-level city of An’ning, Kunming City, from June 25 to July 25 with experts answering questions from the public, according to PetroChina’s Yunnan subsidiary.

The major contents of the report are available on the official website of PetroChina’s parent China National Petroleum Corporation.

 

 

>>  Root causes of sexual violence in conflict must be eliminated

By Pei Lei

A Chinese diplomat on Monday of June 24 urged the international community to eliminate the root causes of sexual violence in conflict, calling for overall development of women.

Wang Min, China’s deputy permanent representative to the UN, made the remarks at an open debate of Security Council on women and peace and security.

“Protection of gender equality and women’s rights is true reflection of human civilization and progress. It’s also related to the world peace and development,” Wang said, who highlighted the importance of full development of women.

“The international community should eliminate the sources of conflict, devote major attention to economic and social development, advance the status of women in real terms and make the empowerment of women a reality,” he noted.

Meanwhile, the envoy called on the Security Council, which is the primary body tasked with maintaining peace and security, to focus on conflict prevention, dispute mediation and post-conflict peacebuilding, so as to create “political, security and legal environments conducive to eliminating sexual violence.”

In the meeting, the Chinese diplomat also pointed out that governments bear the primary responsibility in protecting women, and combating sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict situations.

“The fight against sexual violence in conflict must be carried out on the basis of full respect of national sovereignty,” Wang told the Council.

 

 

School principal receives 18 years for sexual assaults 

By Hu Tao and Xu Haitao

A school principal was jailed for 18 years for raping and molesting girls in Qianshan County in east China’s Anhui Province, a local court said on Tuesday of June 25.

Yang Qifa, 59-year-old principal of Tianming Primary School, was guilty of raping two girls several times and molesting seven other girls on dozens of occasions from 2001 to 2012, the Qianshan County People’s Court said.

Yang abused the girls at various places, including classrooms, offices, his home or at the girl’s house.

Yang was punished severely as his deeds seriously hurt the physical and mental health of the young girls, as well as damaged the school’s reputation, said the court.

Yang appealed against the sentence in court.

The sexual assault case is the latest to be reported involving primary schools recently, arousing public concerns about teachers’ misconduct and safety of students.

Sources with the Supreme People’s Court said in May that courts would crack down on crimes against juveniles, show minimal tolerance toward such offenders and offer the greatest level of protection to children.

 

 

>>  Retrial of 1995 robbery, theft cases opens in E China

By Wang Wen and Qiu Lihua

The trial of five men who were sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve or life imprisonment for robbery and theft in 1995 reopened on Tuesday after new evidence was discovered.

Chen Jianyang, Tian Weidong, Zhu Youping and Tian Xiaoping had been convicted of robbing a taxi driver and contributing to his death on March 20, 1995 in Xiaoshan District of Hangzhou, capital of east China’s Zhejiang Province, according to the provincial Higher People’s Court.

Chen Jianyang, Tian Weidong, Wang Jianping and Tian Xiaoping had also been found guilty of carrying out a robbery in the same area on August 12, 1995.

Chen Jianyang and Tian Weidong were charged with stealing property valued at 1,600 yuan (260 U.S. dollars).

Tian Xiaoping also robbed two truck drivers on his own on October 5, 1995.

Chen Jianyang, Tian Weidong and Wang Jianping were given the death penalty, while Zhu was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve by the Intermediate People’s Court of Hangzhou on July 11, 1997. Tian Xiaoping was sentenced to life imprisonment.

The four men who were given the death penalty appealed to the higher court, and all of them received a death sentence with a two-year reprieve by the Zhejiang Provincial Higher People’s Court on December 29, 1997.

However, in July 2011, police arrested a man named Xiang Shengyuan, whose fingerprints matched the ones found at the scene of the robbery and death of the taxi driver in 1995.

Xiang was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve for the crime of intentional homicide on May 30, 2013.

In May this year, the provincial Higher People’s Court granted a retrial of the cases of the five people who may have been wrongly convicted.

In Tuesday’s trial, the prosecutor suggested that the verdicts be changed in the two 1995 cases, because there were factual errors in the original trial of the robbery case in March 1995 and there was a lack of evidence in the other robbery case in August 1995.

Nearly 100 people, including the five defendants in the original trial, their families and journalists, attended the trial.

 

 

>>  Trial reopens in controversial rape-murder case

By Cao Kai and Zhu Feng

The trial of Wang Shujin, a man from north China’s Hebei Province who has confessed to crimes for which another man has already been executed, re-opened on Tuesday.

Nie Shubin was executed in 1995 at the age of 21 for the 1994 rape and murder of a woman in the provincial capital of Shijiazhuang. After Wang was apprehended by police in 2005 for three separate rape and murder cases, he confessed to also having raped and murdered the woman in Shijiazhuang.

However, on Tuesday morning, a prosecutor and defense attorney in the Handan Intermediate People’s Court debated whether Wang is, in fact, the perpetrator in the 1994 case.

Wang confessed to the crimes in court. He said he pushed the woman off of a bicycle, raped her and kicked her in the chest until she died. He said he took the woman’s dress as a gift for his wife and left her lying naked in a corn field.

However, the prosecutor said the woman was found in a white undershirt and nylon socks, with a colored shirt wrapped around her neck. She had no bone fractures and died of suffocation.

The two sides also disagreed on the time that the crime was committed and on the height of the victim.

The prosecutor showed an autopsy report, a crime scene investigation report and witness testimony during the proceedings.

Wang’s attorney, Zhu Aimin, said it was his first time seeing the evidence shown by the prosector.

Zhu said he believes the materials should have been entered into evidence prior to the start of the trial, giving him time to look through them.

He also expressed doubt about the validity and authenticity of the newly-presented evidence and asked for an adjournment so he could examine it.

The judge announced the adjournment at about 10:50 a.m. It has not yet been decided when the trial will reconvene.

In Wang’s first trial in March 2007, he was sentenced to death in three rape and murder cases. But Wang filed an appeal with the court because the prosecutor did not pursue the fourth rape and murder case, which Nie Shubin had already been executed for. The Hebei Provincial Higher People’s Court held a second trial for Wang’s fourth case that year. There was no verdict in the second trial, which did not resume until Tuesday.

Nie Shubin’s mother, 68-year-old Zhang Huanzhi, had pinned her hopes on having her son exonerated in the second trial, but said she felt depressed after Tuesday’s proceedings.

Nie’s case has been a recurring topic in Chinese media, as the Chinese government started to enforce its revised criminal procedure law on January 1.

The revised law pledges to “respect and protect human rights” in criminal proceedings and correct any mistakes in the event that an erroneous judgment is discovered.

The law bans forced self-incrimination and requires courts to exclude evidence obtained through extortion and torture. It also tightens requirements for arrests and strengthens the rights of defense lawyers.

The political and legal departments of Hebei will firmly support media supervision of legal justice, but the media should also respect the law and avoid using “injurug abuse rates are higher among younger users, the ministry said, adding that 86.5 percent of drug users under 18 abuse synthetic drugs.

China views drug users not only as criminals, but also as victims and patients. In a bid to educate drug users and help them live drug-free lives, the country registers drug users and arranges regular police visits with them.

 

 

 

 

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