Katyusha News Reference ——March 30, 2021

Ⅰ. The New Federal State of China News

1. The United States joined with a number of nations, including Israel, the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada, to criticize a report from the World Health Organization on the origins of the coronavirus pandemic, after the Chinese Communist Party had a strong hand in its production.

2. World Health Organization director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Tuesday the organization’s mission in Wuhan to research the origins of COVID-19 did not sufficiently investigate the lab leak theory.

3. Rep. Jim Banks, the Republican Study Group, is calling on Secretary of State Antony Blinken to impose real costs on Chinese Communist Party for its cover-up of the COVID-19 outbreak in the early stages of the pandemic, arguing the Biden administration hasn’t done enough to hold it accountable.

4. More than 100 professors in international affairs, China studies, and law from multiple countries called for increased transparency in college administrators’ dealings with China in a letter circulated Tuesday. Notable signatories include Matt Pottinger, a visiting fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and former deputy national security adviser who has been directly sanctioned by China, as well as Magnus Fiskesjö, a professor at Cornell University leading the opposition to Cornell’s cozy relationship with Beijing.

5. The state department’s 2020 human rights report has accused Chinese Communist Party of committing “genocide and crimes against humanity” against Uyghurs in an annual human rights report that also raised concerns about Saudi Arabia, Myanmar and Venezuela.

6. CCP’s loans to poor countries in Africa and Asia impose unusual secrecy and repayment terms that are hurting their ability to renegotiate debts after the coronavirus pandemic, a group of U.S. and German researchers said in a report Wednesday. CCP banks insist on being repaid ahead of other creditors, which can disrupt debt talks with groups of lenders, their report said.

7. CCP media on Monday used the blockage of the Suez Canal to propose trade routes across land established by China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as an alternative to maritime shipping.

8. China is “already a power” in the Middle East and may look to further supplant U.S. influence in the region when it comes time to rebuild war-torn Syria, Israel’s former ambassador to the United States Michael Oren warns.

9. ” British Broadcasting Corp.’s China correspondent John Sudworth has left Beijing after intense criticism from the Chinese government and citizens of the outlet’s recent coverage. “John’s work has exposed truths the Chinese authorities did not want the world to know,” according to a statement on Twitter by the BBC News Press Team. “The BBC is proud of John’s award-winning reporting during his time in Beijing and he remains our China correspondent.”

10. The China-U.S. trade war is pushing Beijing to step up its efforts to steal technology and poach talent from Taiwan to boost China’s semiconductor industry’s self-sufficiency, the government of Taiwan said on Wednesday.

11. Liang Wannian, who was co-leader of the joint study into the origins of COVID-19 by China and the WHO said on Wednesday there was no factual basis to accusations that China did not share data with researchers appointed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to look into the origins of COVID-19.

12. People’s Liberation Army ties to the WIV must “be pursued by the press, certainly by the World Health Organization,” former deputy national security adviser Matthew Pottinger told 60 Minutes on Sunday.

13. CCP enlisted surveillance firms to help draw up standards for mass facial recognition systems, researchers said on Tuesday, warning that an unusually heavy emphasis on tracking characteristics such as ethnicity created wide scope for abuse.

14. British Foreign Secretary Raab said on Tuesday that China had breached the 1984 Joint Declaration by enacting changes to Hong Kong’s electoral system which undermined the freedoms of people in the former British colony.

15. Indian authorities have blocked at least two of ByteDance’s bank accounts for alleged tax evasion, prompting it to ask a court to quash the directive that it fears will hit its operations, two sources with direct knowledge told.

16. Federal Communications Commissioner Brendan Carr on Tuesday called for new steps to ensure Huawei Technologies and ZTE equipment is barred from U.S. telecommunications networks and ensure no electronic devices produced with forced labor enter the United States.

17. The non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch published a plea to leaders of African countries Monday to stop supportingChinese Communist Party’s attempts to avoid accountability for the ongoing genocide of Uyghur and other Turkic Muslims populations in Xinjiang.

18. “EU-U.S. relations are clearly back on track,“ Josep Borrell, the European Union’s high representative for foreign policy and vice president of the European Commission, wrote in a blog post on March 29

19. Miguel Berger, state secretary of the German Foreign Ministry, met on behalf of the German government with representatives of the German think tank Merics on Mar 29, which has been sanctioned by Chinese Communist Party, and said that it “as a leading think tank on Chinese issues, we fully support their impartial work.”

20.  The Chinese Olympic Committee urged Taiwan not to join the boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics at a sports exchange forum with its Taiwan counterpart on March 30, following calls from many countries to boycott the Games over human rights concerns in Xinjiang.

21. According to Hong Kong media, 150 journalists from Portugal have public a letter on Facebook, calling on Portugal to set up a special committee to supervise the implementation of the China-Portugal Joint Statement and ensure that the Macao system will remain unchanged for 50 years. The letter was sent to the Portuguese parliament and other institutions on March 29.

II. World News

1. Japan and Indonesia pledged on Tuesday to tighten security ties and signed a deal to facilitate transfers of defence equipment and technology, as their near neighbour China expands its economic and military might. Chinese Communist Party’s territorial claims in the East and South China seas have become a priority issue in an increasingly testy Sino-U.S. relationship and also raise significant security concerns for Japan.

2. White House News ,On Friday, April 2, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan will welcome National Security Secretariat Secretary General Shigeru Kitamura of Japan and National Security Advisor Suh Hoon of the Republic of Korea for a trilateral dialogue at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD.

3. ” U.S. Ambassador Hennessey-Niland, who was visiting Taipei on Tuesday, referred to Taiwan as a country, “I know that here in Taiwan people describe the relationship between the United States and Taiwan as real friends, real progress and I believe that description applies to the three countries — the United States, Taiwan and Palau.”

4. The US State Department has ordered the departure of non-essential diplomats from Myanmar, it said in a statement Tuesday, amid a crackdown on protesters that has killed hundreds since the country’s military coup began.

Himalaya Moscow Katyusha(RU)YinHe

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