After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the United States faced a challenge in enlisting the full support of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in the counterterrorism fight against Al Qaeda. This effort raised short-term policy issues about how to elicit cooperation and how to address PRC concerns about the U.S.-led war (Operation Enduring Freedom). Longer-term issues have concerned whether counterterrorism has strategically transformed bilateral ties and whether China’s support was valuable and not obtained at the expense of other U.S. interests.
The extent of U.S.-China counterterrorism cooperation has been limited, but the tone and context of counterterrorism helped to stabilize—even if it did not transform—the closer bilateral relationship pursued by President George Bush in late 2001. China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), has not fought in the U.S.-led counterterrorism coalition. The Bush Administration designated the PRC-targeted “East Turkistan Islamic Movement” (ETIM) as a terrorist organization in August 2002, reportedly allowed PRC interrogators access to Uighur detainees at Guantanamo in September 2002, and held a summit in Texas in October 2002.
Since 2005, however, U.S. concerns about China’s extent of cooperation in counterterrorism have increased. In September 2005, Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick acknowledged that “China and the United States can do more together in the global fight against terrorism” after “a good start,” in his policy speech that called on China to be a “responsible stakeholder” in the world. The summits of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in 2005 and 2006 raised U.S. concerns. Since the summer of 2007, U.S. officials have expressed more concern about China-origin arms that have been found in the conflict involving U.S. forces in Afghanistan, as part of the broader threat posed by Iran and its arms transfers.
Congress has oversight over the closer ties with China and a number of policy options. U.S. policy has addressed law-enforcement and intelligence ties; oppressed Uighur (Uyghur) people in western Xinjiang whom China claims to be linked to “terrorists”; detained Uighurs at Guantanamo Bay prison; Olympic security in August 2008; sanctions that ban exports of arms and security equipment; weapons nonproliferation; port security; military-to-military contacts; China’s influence and support in Central Asia through the SCO; and China’s arms transfers to Iran. Also, Congress has concerns about suspected PRC harassment of Uighurs and others in the United States, the President’s efforts to transfer the Uighurs detained at Guantanamo, and efforts to seek China’s counterterrorism cooperation (with U.S. assessments of mixed implications). The United States detained 22 Uighurs and rejected China’s demand to take them while seeking a third country to accept them. In 2006, Albania accepted five of them. In June 2009, Bermuda accepted four. In November 2009, Palau accepted six. In February 2010, Switzerland accepted two Uighurs. The five Uighurs remaining in detention had been taken into custody in Pakistan. On February 26, 2010, the House passed H.R. 2701 (Reyes), with Section 351 which would require an unclassified summary of intelligence on any threats posed by the Uighurs who were detained at Guantanamo. Other relevant bills in the 111th Congress include: H.R. 2346 (P.L. 111-32); H.Res. 417 (Baldwin); H.Res. 624 (Delahunt); H.Res. 774 (Hastings); H.Res. 953 (McGovern); H.R. 2294 (Boehner); S.Res. 155 (Brown); and S. 1054 (Inouye). The Obama Administration has proposed that China increase contributions and coordination in investments and assistance to help stabilize Pakistan and Afghanistan. With concerns about military operations in Central Asia, the United States also has concerns about dealing with China in its northwestern region of Xinjiang. On July 8, 2010, Norway arrested three men reportedly connected with the Turkistan Islamic Party (another name for ETIM) and Al Qaeda.
After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, the United States faced a challenge in enlisting the full support of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in the counterterrorism fight against Al Qaeda. This effort raised short-term policy issues about how to elicit cooperation and how to address PRC concerns about the U.S.-led war (Operation Enduring Freedom). Longer-term issues have concerned whether counterterrorism has strategically transformed bilateral ties and whether China's support was valuable and not obtained at the expense of other U.S. interests.
The extent of U.S.-China counterterrorism cooperation has been limited, but the tone and context of counterterrorism helped to stabilize—even if it did not transform—the closer bilateral relationship pursued by President George Bush in late 2001. China's military, the People's Liberation Army (PLA), has not fought in the U.S.-led counterterrorism coalition. The Bush Administration designated the PRC-targeted "East Turkistan Islamic Movement" (ETIM) as a terrorist organization in August 2002, reportedly allowed PRC interrogators access to Uighur detainees at Guantanamo in September 2002, and held a summit in Texas in October 2002.
Since 2005, however, U.S. concerns about China's extent of cooperation in counterterrorism have increased. In September 2005, Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick acknowledged that "China and the United States can do more together in the global fight against terrorism" after "a good start," in his policy speech that called on China to be a "responsible stakeholder" in the world. The summits of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in 2005 and 2006 raised U.S. concerns. Since the summer of 2007, U.S. officials have expressed more concern about China-origin arms that have been found in the conflict involving U.S. forces in Afghanistan, as part of the broader threat posed by Iran and its arms transfers.
Congress has oversight over the closer ties with China and a number of policy options. U.S. policy has addressed law-enforcement and intelligence ties; oppressed Uighur (Uyghur) people in western Xinjiang whom China claims to be linked to "terrorists"; detained Uighurs at Guantanamo Bay prison; Olympic security in August 2008; sanctions that ban exports of arms and security equipment; weapons nonproliferation; port security; military-to-military contacts; China's influence and support in Central Asia through the SCO; and China's arms transfers to Iran. Also, Congress has concerns about suspected PRC harassment of Uighurs and others in the United States, the President's efforts to transfer the Uighurs detained at Guantanamo, and efforts to seek China's counterterrorism cooperation (with U.S. assessments of mixed implications). The United States detained 22 Uighurs and rejected China's demand to take them while seeking a third country to accept them. In 2006, Albania accepted five of them. In June 2009, Bermuda accepted four. In November 2009, Palau accepted six. In February 2010, Switzerland accepted two Uighurs. The five Uighurs remaining in detention had been taken into custody in Pakistan. On February 26, 2010, the House passed H.R. 2701 (Reyes), with Section 351 which would require an unclassified summary of intelligence on any threats posed by the Uighurs who were detained at Guantanamo. Other relevant bills in the 111th Congress include: H.R. 2346 (P.L. 111-32); H.Res. 417 (Baldwin); H.Res. 624 (Delahunt); H.Res. 774 (Hastings); H.Res. 953 (McGovern); H.R. 2294 (Boehner); S.Res. 155 (Brown); and S. 1054 (Inouye). The Obama Administration has proposed that China increase contributions and coordination in investments and assistance to help stabilize Pakistan and Afghanistan. With concerns about military operations in Central Asia, the United States also has concerns about dealing with China in its northwestern region of Xinjiang. On July 8, 2010, Norway arrested three men reportedly connected with the Turkistan Islamic Party (another name for ETIM) and Al Qaeda.
China has seen itself as a victim of terrorist attacks in the 1990s, thought to be committed by some Muslim extremists (ethnic Uighur separatists) in the northwestern Xinjiang region. Some Uighur activists reportedly received training in Afghanistan. China's concerns appeared to place it in a position to support Washington and share intelligence after the attacks on September 11, 2001. In a message to President Bush on September 11, PRC ruler Jiang Zemin condemned the terrorist attacks and offered condolences. In a phone call with the President on September 12, Jiang reportedly promised to cooperate with the United States to combat terrorism. At the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) on the same day, the PRC (a permanent member) voted with the others for Resolution 1368 (to combat terrorism). On September 20, Beijing said that it offered "unconditional support" in fighting terrorism. On September 20-21, visiting Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan promised cooperation, and Secretary of State Colin Powell indicated that discussions covered intelligence-sharing but not military cooperation. PRC counterterrorism experts attended a "productive" initial meeting on September 25, 2001, in Washington, DC. On September 28, 2001, China voted with all others in the UNSC for Resolution 1373, reaffirming the need to combat terrorism.
PRC promises of support for the U.S. fight against terrorism, however, were qualified by other initial statements expressing concerns about U.S. military action. China also favored exercising its decision-making authority at the UNSC, where it has veto power. Initial commentary in official PRC media faulted U.S. intelligence and U.S. defense and foreign policies (including that on missile defense) for the attacks. On September 18, 2001, in a phone call with British Prime Minister Tony Blair, China reported Jiang as saying that war against terrorism required conclusive evidence, specific targets to avoid hurting innocent people, compliance with the U.N. Charter, and a role for the Security Council. Also, observers were appalled at the reported gleeful anti-U.S. reactions in the PRC's online chat rooms after the attacks.
As President George W. Bush entered office in January 2001, the Director of Central Intelligence briefed him on the top three concerns for U.S. security: terrorism, weapons proliferation, and China.1 In April 2001, President Bush had to confront China in the EP-3/F-8 aircraft collision crisis and U.S. arms sales to Taiwan.2 Since the September 11th attacks, the extent of U.S.-China counterterrorism cooperation has been limited, but the tone and context of counterterrorism helped to stabilize—even if it did not transform—the closer bilateral relationship pursued by President Bush in late 2001. In the short term, U.S. security policy toward Beijing sought counterterrorism cooperation, shifting from issues about weapons proliferation and military maritime safety. Given the mixed state of bilateral ties after the collision crisis, Beijing's support met much of initial U.S. expectations. Testifying to Congress in February 2002, Secretary of State Colin Powell praised Beijing's diplomatic support, saying that China "helped in the war against terrorism."3
China's long-standing relationship with nuclear-armed Pakistan was an important factor in considering the significance of Beijing's support, especially with concerns about the viability of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf's government. Some said that Pakistan's cooperation with the United States must have come with PRC acquiescence, pointing to a PRC envoy's meeting with Musharraf on September 18, 2001. However, on September 13, 2001, Musharraf already had agreed to fight with the United States against bin Laden.4 The PRC has reportedly provided Pakistan with nuclear and missile technology. China could provide intelligence about Pakistan's nuclear weapons and any suspected technology transfers out of Pakistan to countries like North Korea, Iran, and Libya.
In the long term, counterterrorism was initially thought by some to hold strategic implications for the U.S.-PRC relationship. However, it has remained debatable as to whether such cooperation has fundamentally transformed the relationship, while critics have been concerned about compromises to other U.S. interests. Policymakers watched to see whether Beijing's leaders used the opportunity to improve bilateral ties, especially on weapons nonproliferation problems. In his State of the Union speech on January 29, 2002, President Bush expressed his expectation that "in this moment of opportunity, a common danger is erasing old rivalries. America is working with Russia and China and India, in ways we have never before, to achieve peace and prosperity." Nonetheless, Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet testified to Congress in February 2002, that the 9/11 attacks did not change "the fundamentals" of China's approach to us.5
The PRC's concerns about domestic attacks and any links to foreign terrorist groups, U.S.-PRC relations, China's international standing in a world dominated by U.S. power (particularly after the terrorist attacks), and its image as a responsible world power helped explain China's supportive stance. However, Beijing also worried about U.S. military action near China, U.S.-led alliances, Japan's active role in the war on terrorism, greater U.S. influence in Central and South Asia, and U.S. support for Taiwan—all exacerbating long-standing fears of "encirclement."
China issued a Defense White Paper in December 2002, stating that major powers remained in competition but that since the September 2001 attacks against the United States, countries have increased cooperation. Although this policy paper contained veiled criticisms of the United States for its military buildup, stronger alliances in Asia, and increased arms sales to Taiwan, it did not criticize the United States by name as in the Defense White Paper of 2000. However, the Defense White Papers of 2004 and 2006 again criticized the United States by name.
Since 2005, U.S. concerns about China's extent of cooperation in counterterrorism have increased. In September 2005, Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick acknowledged that "China and the United States can do more together in the global fight against terrorism" after "a good start," in his policy speech that called on China to be a "responsible stakeholder" in the world. The summits of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in 2005 and 2006 raised U.S. concerns. Since the summer of 2007, U.S. officials have expressed more concern about China-origin arms that have been found in the conflict involving U.S. forces in Afghanistan, as part of the broader threat posed by Iran and its arms transfers.
In addition to the specific congressional actions discussed in this report, some policy options for Congress include:
The counterterrorism campaign helped to stabilize U.S.-PRC relations up to the highest level, which faced tensions early in the Bush Administration in April 2001 with the EP-3 aircraft collision crisis and U.S. approvals of arms sales to Taiwan. According to the Final Report of the 9/11 Commission issued in July 2004, President Bush chaired a National Security Council (NSC) meeting on the night of September 11, 2001, in which he contended that the attacks provided a "great opportunity" to engage Russia and China. President Bush traveled to Shanghai in October 2001 for his first meeting with then PRC President Jiang Zemin at the Leaders' Meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. Bush called the PRC an important partner in the global coalition against terrorists but also warned Jiang that the "war on terrorism must never be an excuse to persecute minorities."6 On February 21-22, 2002, the President visited Beijing (a trip postponed in October), after Tokyo and Seoul. The President then hosted Jiang at Bush's ranch in Crawford, TX, on October 25, 2002, and Bush said that the two countries were "allies" in fighting terrorism.7 By the fall of 2005, Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick acknowledged that "China and the United States can do more together in the global fight against terrorism" after "a good start," in his speech calling on China to be a "responsible stakeholder."8
After President Barack Obama took office, he agreed with top PRC leader Hu Jintao on April 1, 2009, to elevate the "Senior Dialogue" launched by Deputy Secretary of State Zoellick in August 2005 to be held by the Secretary of State, to combine it into a comprehensive dialogue with the Strategic Economic Dialogue held by the Secretary of the Treasury, and to use China's preferred term of "strategic" (vs. "senior"), thus re-naming it the "Strategic and Economic Dialogue" (S&ED). At the first S&ED on July 27-28, 2009, in Washington, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged cooperation to increase stability in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
On December 6, 2001, Francis Taylor, the State Department's Coordinator for Counter-Terrorism, ended talks in Beijing that reciprocated the September 25 meeting in Washington, DC. He announced that the PRC agreed to give "positive consideration" to a long-sought U.S. request for the FBI to set up a Legal Attaché office at the U.S. Embassy, that counterterrorism consultations would occur semi-annually, and that the two sides would set up a Financial Counter-Terrorism Working Group. He reported that Beijing's cooperation entailed coordination at the U.N., intelligence-sharing, law enforcement liaison, and monitoring of financial networks.9 The PRC approved the FBI office in February 2002, and the first semi-annual meeting on terrorist financing was held at the Treasury Department in late May. The FBI attaché arrived at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing in September 2002. In November 2005, U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales met with PRC Minister of Public Security Zhou Yongkang in Beijing. Visiting Beijing in June 2007, FBI Assistant Director for International Operations Thomas Fuentes said that he sought "more information" from the PRC on terrorism.10
In December 2002, Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly confirmed and defended intelligence-sharing with the PRC, saying "we are sharing [counterterrorism] information to an unprecedented extent but making judgments independently."11 At the S&ED in July 2009, President Obama called for "continued" intelligence-sharing to disrupt terrorist plots and dismantle terrorist networks, but he also urged the PRC to respect and protect ethnic and religious minorities in the country. From August 31 to September 3, 2009, the Director of the Second Department (on intelligence) of the PLA's General Staff Department, Major General Yang Hui, reportedly visited Washington and met with the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Lieutenant General Ronald Burgess. Yang complained about leaks that resulted in press reports on the incident in 2006 when a PLAN submarine closely followed the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk and about alleged terrorist ties of Muslim Uighurs in China's northwest.12
Questions concern the U.S. stance on the PRC's policy toward the Uighur ("wee-ger") people in the northwestern Xinjiang region that links them to what the PRC calls vaguely "East Turkistan terrorist organizations." Congress has concerns about the human rights of Uighurs. China has accused the United States of "double standards" in disputes over how to handle the Uighurs.
Xinjiang has a history of unrest dating back before September 2001, particularly since the unrest in 1990. The PRC charges Uighurs (or Uyghurs) with violent crimes and "terrorism," but Uighurs say they have suffered executions, torture, detentions, harassment, religious persecution, and racial profiling. Human rights and Uighur groups have warned that, after the 9/11 attacks, the PRC shifted to use the international counterterrorism campaign to justify the PRC's long-term cultural, religious, and political repression of Uighurs both in and outside of the PRC.13 Since 2002, the PLA has conducted military exercises in Xinjiang with Central Asian countries and Russia to fight what the PRC calls "East Turkistan terrorists" and what it combines as the threat of "three evil forces" (separatism, extremism, and terrorism), conflating ethnic, religious, and resistant/violent activities.
Critics say China compelled extraditions of Uighurs for execution and other punishment from countries such as Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Nepal, and Pakistan, raising questions about violations of the international legal principle of non-refoulement and the U.N. Convention Against Torture. On December 19, 2009, Cambodia joined this list when it returned 20 Uighurs who fled Xinjiang after the unrest in July 2009. The State Department, up to even the Secretary and Deputy Secretary, opposed Cambodia's return of these "asylum seekers" and urged China to ensure transparency, due process, and proper treatment for them. On April 1, 2010, the State Department announced that on March 19, the United States told Cambodia of a suspension in the shipment of 200 trucks and trailers that were to be provided as Excess Defense Articles. On January 18, 2010, Burma reportedly deported 17 Uighurs and 1 Han to the PRC.14
The Uighurs are an ethnically Turkish people who speak Uyghur (close to the Turkish language) and practice a moderate form of Islam. They say that their population totals 10-15 million people. Countering China's colonial name of "Xinjiang," meaning "new frontier," the Uighurs call their Central Asian homeland "East Turkistan." The land makes up about one-sixth of today's PRC. In 1884, the Manchurian Qing empire based in northern China incorporated the area as a province called "Xinjiang." Later, it was briefly the Republic of East Turkistan in 1933 and in 1944, and a Soviet satellite power from 1934 to 1941. In October 1949, the Communist Party of China set up the PRC and deployed PLA troops to occupy and govern Xinjiang. In 1955, the PRC incorporated the area as the "Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region."15 In addition to PLA forces, the paramilitary People's Armed Police (PAP) has imposed controls. Unique to Xinjiang are the paramilitary Production and Construction Corps (PCC) guarding, producing, and settling there; the past nuclear weapon testing at Lop Nur; and routine executions for what Uighurs say are political and religious dissent. Uighurs complain of forced assimilation, instead of "autonomy." Like Tibetans, Uighurs resent the Communist controls on religion, military deployments and exercises, increasing immigration of ethnic Han (Chinese) people, and forced birth control. PRC census data in 2003 report Uighurs at 8.4 million and Hans at 40% of Xinjiang's population (up from 6% in 1953). In the early 1990s, the breakup of the Soviet Union and independence of neighboring Central Asian republics encouraged the Uighurs. In response to their dissent, the PRC regime routinely has held huge public sentencing rallies and executions of Uighurs, forcing thousands to watch (one in 1998 involved more than 20,000) and intimidating Uighurs by "killing one to frighten thousands," according to official PRC media.
As discussed above, Francis Taylor, the State Department's Coordinator for Counter-Terrorism, visited Beijing in December 2001. While he confirmed that there were "people from western China that are involved in terrorist activities in Afghanistan," he rejected the view that "all of the people of western China are indeed terrorists" and urged Beijing to deal politically with their "legitimate" social and economic challenges and not with counterterrorism means. Taylor stated that the United States did not agree that "East Turkestan" forces were terrorists. He said that the U.S. military captured some people from western China who were involved in Afghanistan with Al Qaeda (the terrorist group led by Osama bin Laden).
Nonetheless, while in Beijing on August 26, 2002, Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage announced that, after months of bilateral discussions, he designated (on August 19) the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) as a terrorist group that committed acts of violence against unarmed civilians. China had issued a new report in January 2002, publicly charging ETIM and other East Turkistan "terrorist" groups with attacks in the 1990s and linking them to the international terrorism of Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda.16 The U.S. Embassy in Beijing suggested that ETIM planned to attack the U.S. Embassy in Kyrgyzstan, but no attack took place. The Kyrgyz Foreign Minister cited as suspicious that one Uighur was found with a map of embassies in Bishkek.17 Armitage called on China to respect the rights of Uighurs, but he also said that Washington was grateful for China's support at the United Nations Security Council.18
Since then, the United States has refused to designate any other PRC-targeted and "East Turkistan" or Uighur-related organization as a "terrorist organization."
The State Department designated ETIM as a terrorist organization to freeze its assets under Executive Order 13224 ("Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions With Persons Who Commit, Threaten to Commit, or Support Terrorism") but not as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) (under the Immigration and Nationality Act). E.O. 13224 defines "terrorism" as "activity that (1) involves a violent act or an act dangerous to human life, property, or infrastructure; and (2) appears to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, kidnapping, or hostage-taking." At the same time, the United States, PRC, Afghanistan, and Kyrgyzstan asked the United Nations to designate ETIM under U.N. Security Council Resolutions 1267 and 1390 (to freeze assets of this group).
Later, in 2004, the Secretary of State also included ETIM in the "Terrorist Exclusion List (TEL)" (to exclude certain foreign aliens from entering the United States), under Section 411 of the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-56).
In April 2009, the Treasury Department designated Abdul Haq (aka Abdul Heq), a Uighur born in Xinjiang and leader of the East Turkistan Islamic Party (ETIP), another name for ETIM, as an individual targeted under E.O. 13224. (Also see discussion of ETIM's leadership below.) As part of the justification for the designation, the Treasury Department declared that Haq had directed in January 2008 the military commander of ETIP to attack cities in China holding the Olympic Games but did not state that such attacks occurred. Also, the Treasury Department noted that as of 2005 (four years prior), Haq was a member of Al Qaeda's Shura Council (consultative group).19 Just preceding the U.S. designation, the U.N. Security Council acted under Resolution 1267 to identify Haq as a Uighur born in Xinjiang in 1971, the overall leader in Pakistan of ETIM, and an individual associated with Al Qaeda. A newspaper reported from Islamabad in mid-2009 that Abdul Haq was among Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders who met with the leader of the Pakistani Taliban (a group formed in 2007), Baitullah Mehsud, about ceasing attacks in Pakistan to focus on the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan.20 In March 2010, various PRC and other media reported that a drone attack killed Abdul Haq in February in North Waziristan, an anarchic border region of Pakistan. However, the PRC Foreign Ministry said it could not confirm the claim.
The case against ETIM—including even its name—has been complicated, in part by questions of the credibility of PRC claims that link "terrorism" to repressed groups like Uighurs, Tibetans, and Falungong. Moreover, there have been challenges in verifying the authenticity of Internet messages and websites ostensibly belonging to the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP), apparently another name for ETIM, with possibilities that the messages were created by such a terrorist group, fabricated by the PRC to justify its charges, or made as a deception by a third party.
No group calling itself ETIM claimed responsibility for violent incidents in the 1990s. Although many Uighur or East Turkistan advocacy groups around the world have been reported for decades, the first available mention of ETIM was found in 2000. A Russian newspaper reported that Osama bin Laden convened a meeting in Afghanistan in 1999 that included the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and ETIM, and he agreed to give them funds.21 A Kyrgyz report in 2001 named ETIM as a militant Uighur organization with links to IMU and training in Afghanistan and Pakistan, but did not mention any links to Al Qaeda.22 Detailed information on "three evil forces" written in August 2001 by a PRC scholar at the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences did not name ETIM.23 Before the PRC government's public report of January 2002 on "East Turkestan terrorists," most were not aware of ETIM, and PRC officials or official media did not mention ETIM until a Foreign Ministry news conference shortly after the September 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States. But even then, the PRC did not blame ETIM for any of alleged incidents.24
In 2002, the leader of what China called ETIM, Hasan Mahsum, referred to his organization as the East Turkistan Islamic Party (ETIP) and said that it had no "organizational links" with Al Qaeda or Taliban (the extremist Islamic regime formed by former anti-Soviet Islamic fighters called Mujahedin that took over Afghanistan in 1994-1996). Moreover, he claimed that ETIM did not receive any financial aid from Osama bin Laden or Al Qaeda, although certain Uighur individuals were involved with the Taliban in Afghanistan.25 In November 2003, an organization calling itself the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) posted on the Internet its denial of the U.S. and PRC designations of ETIM as a "terrorist organization."26
In December 2003, the PRC's Ministry of Public Security issued its first list of wanted "terrorists," accusing four groups as "East Turkistan terrorist organizations" (ETIM, East Turkistan Liberation Organization (ETLO), World Uyghur Youth Congress, and East Turkistan Information Center) and 11 Uighurs as "terrorists," with Hasan Mahsum at the top of the list.27 China demanded foreign assistance to target them. However, the list was intentionally misleading or mistaken, because Mahsum was already dead. Confirming his operational area at the Afghan-Pakistani border, Pakistan's military killed a multinational motley that included Mahsum on October 2, 2003, in Pakistan's South Waziristan tribal district.28 In December 2003, the leadership of what it called TIP (having changed its name from ETIP in 1999 to be inclusive of non-Uighur Turkic peoples) posted on the Internet a eulogy of Mahsum. TIP reviewed his development of an organization in Afghanistan with the Taliban's support but not contact with Al Qaeda. The TIP announced that former Military Affairs Commander Abdul Haq took over as the leader (amir).29 However, the PRC Ministry of Public Security's list did not include Abdul Haq.
There was corroboration about their names. Hozaifa Parhat, one of the 22 Uighurs who were in Afghanistan until late 2001 then ended up at Guantanamo by 2002 and whose name was placed in the landmark court case on whether to release them, readily told his Combatant Status Review Tribunal between 2004 and 2005 that he saw Mahsum who was the leader at the Uighur camp in Afghanistan. Parhat and some other Uighur detainees also said that they heard of Abdul Haq.
In 2004, the deputy leader, Abudula Kariaji, said that ETIM had sent militants trained in small arms and explosives to China and had met in 1999 with Osama bin Laden, who allowed some Uighurs to train in Afghanistan but did not support their non-Arab cause of over-throwing China's rule.30 In January 2008, Al Qaeda in Afghanistan issued a book on 120 "martyrs" that included five who were Uighurs born in Xinjiang and fought with the Taliban in Afghanistan. One of them was said to have died fighting U.S. military forces that launched attacks in 2001.31
In 2003, Mehmet Emin Hazret, the leader of the East Turkistan Liberation Organization (ETLO), another organization targeted by the PRC's 2002 report as a "terrorist organization," denied that his group was responsible for violent incidents or had knowledge of an organization called ETIM, although he knew of its alleged leaders who had been in PRC prisons. Hazret also denied that ETLO had links to Al Qaeda. Nonetheless, he acknowledged that ETLO would inevitably set up a military wing to target the PRC government for its oppression of the Uighur people.32
The PRC's own report of 2002 on "East Turkistan terrorists" claimed bombing incidents in Xinjiang from 1991 to 1998, with none after that year. That report did not discuss bombings outside of Xinjiang or call those other violent incidents "terrorism." The report alleged that some "terrorist" bombings occurred in February to April 1998 and injured 11 people. However, there were no PRC or non-PRC media reports of such incidents in 1998. Moreover, Xinjiang's Party Secretary Wang Lequan and Chairman Abulahat Abdurixit said in Beijing in early 1998 and 1999 that there were no major violent incidents in 1998. In April 1998, a PRC official journal published a comprehensive report on crime, cited bombings in 1997 but none in 1998, and stated that China had no terrorist organizations and had not been penetrated by any international terrorist groups.33 In May 1998, Xinjiang's Vice Chairman Zhang Zhou told foreign reporters that there was an explosion near Kashgar earlier that year, but no one was killed or wounded.34
Before August 2008, the last bombing incident in Xinjiang reported by PRC and non-PRC media occurred in 1997, when three bombs exploded in three buses in Urumqi on February 25, 1997, while two other undetonated bombs were found on two buses. Many reports speculated that the deadly attacks were timed for the mourning period of PRC paramount ruler Deng Xiaoping, who died on February 19.35 However, the likely critical factor was the preceding major turmoil and crackdown in Xinjiang that occurred on February 5-6 in Yining (the western town Uighurs call Gulja), involving Uighur protests against executions, security crackdown, and perhaps hundreds killed and thousands arrested. Uighurs and Amnesty International called the incident the "Gulja Massacre."36 Shortly after the incident on February 25, further bombings were reported in Urumqi on March 1, in Yining on March 3, in Beijing on March 5 and March 7, near Guangzhou on May 12, and in Beijing on May 13; but the PRC did not label the incidents outside of Xinjiang as "terrorist incidents." The incidents in 1997 occurred after the PRC government launched in 1996 the national anti-crime "Strike Hard" campaign that was carried out in Xinjiang and Tibet with crackdowns against those China called "separatists."
Uighur and human rights groups have expressed concern that the U.S. designation of ETIM as a terrorist organization in 2002 helped China to further justify persecution and violent repression against the people in Xinjiang. They also have noted distinctions between terrorism and armed resistance against military or security forces. They have pointed out that Uighurs have no anti-U.S. sentiments but rather look to the United States as a champion of their human rights.
In December 2002, Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly defended the designation of ETIM as a step based on U.S. evidence that ETIM had links to Al Qaeda and committed violence against civilians, "not as a concession to the PRC." Moreover, Lorne Craner, Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, specifically traveled to Urumqi to speak at Xinjiang University as part of a visit for the U.S.-PRC Human Rights Dialogue. He said that "both President Bush and Secretary Powell have made very clear publicly and privately that the U.S. does not and will not condone governments using counterterrorism as an excuse to silence peaceful expressions of political or religious views." He added that the United States condemned the "Al Qaeda-linked" ETIM, but he was there to "reaffirm our friendship for the peaceful people of Xinjiang."37
Thus, one question has concerned whether ETIM has been linked to Al Qaeda. In February 2009, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, ruling in a case on releasing Uighurs detained at Guantanamo, noted that "the government had not presented sufficient evidence that the East Turkistan Islamic Movement was associated with al Qaida or the Taliban, or had engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners."38 If ETIM as a group or its leaders as individuals had any connection to Al Qaeda, the extent and threat of ties have been difficult to assess. Compared to ambiguous "association" or "affiliation," specific U.S. allegations have referred to Al Qaeda's financial aid for ETIM and the inclusion of ETIM's leader in Al Qaeda's Shura Council in 2005. U.S. officials have not publicly accused ETIM of attacking U.S. interests as part of Al Qaeda's network.
A separate question has been whether any ties evolved after 2005. In November 2006, the jihadist Al-Fajr (Dawn) Media Center apparently issued its first video described as on behalf of the cause of "jihad in East Turkistan" against the PRC's "occupation of the country." But that video did not mention the TIP organization. On February 26, 2009, TIP's media center, the Voice of Islam, issued a statement to allow the Al-Fajr Media Center to distribute TIP's messages. In videos from 2006 to early 2009, Al Qaeda's deputy leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, on rare occasions, mentioned the East Turkistan cause among various worldwide concerns. Beyond this awareness, he did not cite a relevant organization or action. In a video on the eve of the 7th anniversary of the September 2001 attacks, he did not mention East Turkistan or China in a litany of grievances.39
China has linked charges of terrorism to Uighur groups and Rebiya Kadeer. However, the Congress increasingly has expressed concerns about PRC repression of Uighurs along with concern for Tibetans, including concern about the imprisonment of the relatives of Rebiya Kadeer, a Uighur businesswoman who was detained in the PRC in 1999-2005 and was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 after she gained freedom in the United States.40 In 2006, Ms. Kadeer was elected as the President of the Uyghur American Association (UAA) and World Uyghur Congress (WUC). (In 2004, the East Turkestan National Congress and World Uyghur Youth Congress merged to form the WUC, and it held its first two general assemblies in Munich, Germany, in 2004 and 2006.) In October 2006, a staff delegation of the House International Relations Committee reported heightened congressional concerns about the Administration's designation of ETIM as a terrorist organization and the PRC authorities' beatings and detentions of Kadeer's sons, even during the staff delegation's visit in Urumqi.41 In the 110th Congress, the House passed H.Res. 497 (Ros-Lehtinen), noting that the PRC has manipulated the campaign against terrorists to increase cultural and religious oppression of the Muslim Uighur people and has detained and beaten Rebiya Kadeer's children. Passed on September 17, 2007, the resolution urged the PRC to protect the rights of the Uighurs, release Kadeer's children, and release a Canadian of Uighur descent, Huseyin Celil, who was denied access to Canadian consular officials. On May 22, 2008, Senator Sherrod Brown introduced a similar bill, S.Res. 574. On July 11, Representatives Jim McGovern and Frank Wolf, co-chairs of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, "strongly condemned" China's pre-Olympic crackdown on Uighurs, with the convictions two days earlier of 15 Uighurs (and immediate executions for two, suspended death sentences for three, and life imprisonment for the remaining 10). On July 30, 2008, the House passed H.Res. 1370, calling on the PRC to stop repression of the Tibetan and Uighur peoples. On May 21, 2009, the WUC held its Third General Assembly in the Capitol Visitor Center, at which six Members of Congress spoke. On the same day, Senator Sherrod Brown introduced S.Res. 155, to urge China to stop suppression of the cultural, linguistic, and religious rights of the Uighur people.
Rebiya Kadeer also received presidential support. In June 2007, President Bush met with Kadeer in Prague and criticized the PRC's imprisonment of her sons.42 In July 2008, before going to the Olympic Games in Beijing in August, Bush addressed religious freedom and honored Uighur Muslims, Christians, and Tibetan Buddhists seeking religious freedom in China. He also met at the White House with five advocates for freedom in China, including Kadeer. Bush told her that he would seek the release of her two imprisoned sons.43
During the unrest in July 2009, the PRC blamed Rebiya Kadeer for violent Uighur-Han clashes in Urumqi and pressured foreign governments against any support for her. But in so doing, the PRC also raised her international profile and linked the PRC's tactics against Uighurs to that against Tibetans, who also experienced violent clashes in Lhasa in March 2008 that the PRC blamed on the Dalai Lama. On July 5, 2009, Uighurs in Urumqi protested a deadly fight at a factory on June 25 in southeastern Guangdong province, when Han (ethnic Chinese) workers attacked Uighur migrant workers after a Han man faked an Internet post that Uighur men raped Han women.44 The protests developed into confrontations with deployments of the paramilitary People's Armed Police (PAP) and attacks conducted by both Hans and Uighurs that left 192 dead and 1,721 injured. The PAP allowed Han mobs to carry poles as weapons to attack Uighurs, and the PRC's claims about casualties stressed Hans as the victims and were not independently verified. While the PRC allowed foreign reporters greater access in Urumqi (compared to Lhasa in 2008), the regime blocked international phone and Internet communication. (The regime blocked communication, such as e-mails, Internet access, text messages, and phone calls, through March 2010. Even after ostensibly re-opening channels, some suspected that the authorities restored communication with installed monitoring systems.) On July 6, the Xinjiang local government blamed Rebiya Kadeer in Washington, DC, as the "mastermind" behind the clashes. She denied that accusation against her and the WUC. She called for international investigations of the clashes. The next day, the PRC Foreign Ministry also blamed Kadeer, linked her to "separatism" and "terrorism," and demanded that foreign countries, including the United States, not support her in any way.
In Congress, on July 7, 2009, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued a statement to urge China to ensure peaceful protests and dialogue instead of harsh policies. On July 9, Senator Ted Kaufman spoke on the floor against repression of the Uighurs and restrictions of press freedom in China. On July 10, Representative Bill Delahunt introduced H.Res. 624, to condemn violent repression of Uighurs. Representative Frank Wolf wrote to President Obama and issued a floor statement on July 13, 2009, to call for officials at the White House and State Department to agree to meet with Kadeer. (Unlike President Bush, President Obama and his officials refrained from meeting with Kadeer.) Later, on December 8, Representative James McGovern introduced H.Res. 953, to express the sense of the House that the PRC violated human rights and due process by carrying out executions and arbitrary detentions that targeted Uighurs in the aftermath of the unrest in July.
Aside from casualties, the aftermath included the PRC's crackdown that likely involved secret manhunts as well as suspected unequal law enforcement against Uighurs versus against Hans. Uighur women cried to foreign reporters about their detained husbands, sons, and brothers. Within two weeks after the unrest, the PRC reportedly arrested over 4,000 Uighurs, over-filling prisons so that some were held in PLA warehouses. Kadeer alleged in Tokyo on July 29 that almost 10,000 Uighurs disappeared in Urumqi. At least 300 Uighurs fled from China during the crackdown.45 Months after the unrest, ethnic tension in Xinjiang remained acute. Some Hans directed anger against Uighurs as well as even Wang Lequan (Politburo Member and Secretary of the Communist Party in Xinjiang, who was later replaced in April 2010) and the PLA (for perceived failures to protect Hans and use even tougher force against the Uighurs). In November, the police launched another one of the "Strike Hard" campaigns, which have involved preemptive "first blows." By January 2010, a number of court decisions in Xinjiang issued 26 death sentences and other jail sentences. The courts used the charge of "violent attacking, smashing, looting, and burning," (not "terrorism"). PRC leaders decided to expand the large presence of security forces as "fists," including police, paramilitary, and military forces, trained for armed raids in homes.
Also, the Han-Uighur violence in Xinjiang further complicated China's demands for foreign support for its counterterrorism means. Despite China's attempt to deflect interest from local problems, the WUC denied China's charge. No foreign group, including TIP, claimed responsibility for the unrest. Moreover, China's handling of the unrest brought some foreign criticism, particularly in predominantly Muslim countries like Turkey and organizations like the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC). The Muslim Brotherhood issued a statement on July 7, 2009, that focused on the Uighurs as fellow Muslims (vs. nationalistic Uighur people of "East Turkistan") and called for unity of Islamic nations and boycotts of products made by their enemies. The Hizb ut-Tahrir (Party of Liberation) in Australia also issued a statement on July 8, on China's "suppression" of Muslims in Xinjiang. In Indonesia, Hizb ut Tahrir demonstrated at the PRC embassy on July 15. The Hizb ut-Tahrir in Pakistan issued its statement on July 20, criticizing China's occupation of Muslim land. In June 2010, on the eve of the first anniversary of the unrest, OIC's Secretary-General paid the first such visit to Xinjiang, including Kashgar.
Also, Al Qaeda's network apparently issued its first threat against China. Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in Algeria reportedly called for vengeance against China's interests in Africa. However, an ambush in Algeria attributed to AQIM took place in June 2009, before the July 5 incident in Urumqi, and killed 19 local police officers escorting PRC workers who were unhurt.46 At the end of July, Abdul Haq, TIP's leader, issued a video in Uyghur and distributed by the jihadist Al-Fajr Media Center in Arabic, that criticized the PRC for the events in Guangdong in June and Urumqi in July, called for Uighurs to engage in jihad, and appealed to other Muslims to target the PRC internationally. With a message from Abu-Yahya al-Libi on October 6, 2009, Al Qaeda apparently issued its first message focused on "East Turkistan," calling for education about a "massacre" against Muslims in East Turkistan, a return to Islam, and use of weapons against "invaders." However, he did not specify TIP or attacks, while vaguely calling for China's defeat. In January 2010, TIP produced videos in Uyghur to claim credit for alleged actions in revenge against China's "bloody massacre" on July 5, 2009, and to call vaguely on Muslims in Xinjiang to carry out jihad against China. In March 2010, TIP issued a statement to deny the PRC's charges that Uighur organizations linked to Rebiya Kadeer were responsible for violence in Xinjiang and were linked to TIP. TIP denied religious or organizational links to nine democratic and peaceful organizations such as the World Uyghur Congress, Uyghur American Association, and Uyghur Human Rights Project. The TIP distinguished itself with radical, armed methods.
As discussed above concerning foreign deportations of Uighurs to China, the PRC influenced Cambodia, despite U.S. and U.N. opposition, to hand over 20 Uighurs to China in December 2009. On June 24, 2010, just before the first anniversary of the unrest in July 2009, the PRC Ministry of Public Security (MPS) announced that it uncovered a "terrorist cell" that had planned attacks in 2008 and 2009, and caught and interrogated three alleged "terrorists" among 20 PRC citizens deported from a neighboring country, in apparent reference to Cambodia. MPS said it found that the three had sent e-mails to ETIM to seek help in their escape.
On July 8, 2010, Norway arrested three men whom authorities had under surveillance for over a year as suspects in a plot planned by Al Qaeda's network to commit terrorism, also in the United States and United Kingdom. One was a 39-year-old Norwegian citizen of Uighur origin who moved to Norway in 1999, named Mikael Davud, or Muhammed Rashidin. The other two were citizens of Uzbekistan (moved to Norway in 2002) and Iraq (moved to Norway in 1999). Their plot was reportedly organized by Salah al-Somali, who was a member of Al Qaeda who planned attacks around the world until a U.S. drone killed him in 2009. Under the orders of an Al Qaeda leader in Pakistan, Al-Somali allegedly acted as one of three organizers of three separate, subordinate groups that also plotted attacks in 2009 in New York City and Manchester, England. Unnamed counterterrorism officials said that the groups in Norway, the United States, and the United Kingdom likely were compartmentalized and did not know of each other's plans (allegedly to bomb subways in New York and a shopping mall in Manchester). An unnamed European official said the three in Norway were members of TIP and the ethnic Uighur had contacted Al Qaeda in 2008-2009 in Waziristan, Pakistan.47 However, only one suspect in three plots had an Uighur origin; he likely got to know the other two men in Norway, and the multinational network and direction from Pakistan showed the greater influence of Al Qaeda than TIP. As discussed above, Uighur and Uzbekistan radicals with common Central Asian backgrounds have had contacts for years, through TIP (ETIM) and IMU. If TIP as an organization was involved, the allegations showed that TIP attempted its first action as one of many parts of Al Qaeda's global, multinational network against Western interests, rather than an isolated Uighur-only small group with grievances localized in Xinjiang, or East Turkistan, against the PRC.
Also in July 2010, authorities in Dubai sentenced two Uighurs to 10 years in jail, for allegedly planning as ETIM members to explode a bomb in the DragonMart shopping center in 2008.48
A question pertained to the fate of 22 Uighurs captured in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Soon after the U.S. military launched a war against Al Qaeda in Afghanistan in late 2001, at least 18 of the Uighurs left Afghanistan for Pakistan where Pakistanis ostensibly welcomed them but then lured them into a mosque to be handed over to the U.S. military. The United States then detained the Uighurs at Guantanamo Bay military prison, Cuba, in 2002. The PRC claimed them as its citizens for legal action as "suspected terrorists" and interrogated them at the prison. In May 2004, Amnesty International disclosed "credible allegations" that the United States in September 2002 allowed PRC officials access at Guantanamo to interrogate the Uighur detainees and that they also intimidated and threatened the Uighurs. Amnesty alleged that the Uighurs were subjected to stress and duress treatments, such as environmental manipulation, forced sitting for many hours, and sleep deprivation, some at the direction of the PRC official delegation. The Defense Department did not publicly comment on or deny the report.49 According to the Uighurs, the United States handed over to the PRC officials personal files on them and their families.
Then, in July 2004, Amnesty International urged the United States not to turn the 22 detained Uighurs over to China, where they would face torture and execution in China's campaign to repress the Uighur people in the name of "counterterrorism."50 Other options have included sending them to a third country and resettling them in the United States.
Even while arguing that the United States had reason to detain the Uighurs at Guantanamo, the executive branch nonetheless contended that they should be released. The Departments of Defense and State sought a third country to accept them, rather than send them to China.
Starting in late 2003, the Defense Department reportedly determined that 15 Uighurs at Guantanamo could be released, including five who were picked up because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time and 10 who were considered low-risk detainees whose enemy was the PRC government. Seven others were determined to be "enemy combatants."51 By 2004, U.S. officials told reporters that Uighurs detained at Guantanamo Bay had no more intelligence value, but the United States could not find a third country to accept them, while ruling out their return to China.52 In August 2004, Secretary of State Colin Powell confirmed the dilemma and assured that "the Uighurs are not going back to China, but finding places for them is not a simple matter, but we are trying to find places for them." Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security ruled out the Uighurs' settlement in the United States.53 The United States approached over 100 countries to accept the Uighurs, and the State Department reportedly had considered sending the Uighurs back to China instead of allowing them be resettled in the United States.54
On April 20, 2006, the Defense Department released a list of 558 people detained at Guantanamo, in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit brought by the Associated Press. The list confirmed that there were 22 Uighurs with PRC citizenship being held.
On May 5, 2006, the Pentagon announced the transfer from the Guantanamo Bay prison to Albania of five Uighurs, all of whom had been determined to be "no longer enemy combatants" during reviews in 2004-2005. The PRC then demanded that Albania extradite to China those Uighurs as "terrorists," but Albania refused. Their plight raised a question of whether they should be resettled in the United States or another country, rather than be confined in a camp in Albania.55 Later, they reportedly found work in a snack bar making pizzas. In February 2009, Sweden awarded asylum to one of them, Adil Hakimjan, who became the first former detainee at Guantanamo to find asylum in the European Union.56
By mid-2008, facing major court rulings, the executive branch began to grapple more urgently with the issue of whether and how to release the remaining Uighurs. Meanwhile, defense lawyers for the remaining 17 Uighurs held at Guantanamo Bay complained and testified to Congress that the Uighurs suffered in captivity of nearly total isolation at Camp Six.57
Also in Congress, on June 4, 2008, at a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight, the Department of Justice's Inspector General, Glenn Fine, testified that U.S. military interrogators not only collaborated with PRC government agents to interrogate Uighurs at the prison, but that they also deprived them of sleep the night before by waking them up every 15 minutes in a treatment called the "frequent flyer program."58 (This testimony confirmed Amnesty International's 2004 disclosure that the Bush Administration awarded access to PRC officials to interrogate the Uighurs at Guantanamo in 2002.) The chairman and ranking member, Representatives Bill Delahunt and Dana Rohrabacher, then wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Robert Gates to request that the detained Uighurs promptly be transferred and paroled into the United States. The Members noted that the transfer would not automatically grant asylum, another option for policymakers.59
On July 30, 2008, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman responded to the letter of June 19, 2008, to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates from Representatives Delahunt and Rohrabacher. Edelman wrote in his letter that "many" of the Uighurs detained at Guantanamo received "terrorist training" at a camp run by ETIM, but he nonetheless stressed that the Departments of State and Defense "aggressively" asked many other countries to accept those same detainees. He wrote that:
All of the Uighurs currently detained at Guantanamo were captured in the course of hostilities. Many of the Uighur detainees at Guantanamo received terrorist training at a camp run at the time by the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM), a terrorist organization that received funding from Al Qaeda, or have stated that they are members of the organization itself. ETIM is on the State Department's Terrorist Exclusion List and was designated a terrorist organization under Executive Order 13224, "Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions with Persons Who Commit, Threaten to Commit, or Support Terrorism." There is therefore no current plan to parole Uighur detainees from Guantanamo into the United States. However, the Departments of State and Defense have aggressively approached more than 100 countries to accept the Uighur detainees at Guantanamo, and continue to seek a country that would accept transfer of the Uighurs. To date, only Albania has agreed to accept any and five were transferred there in 2006.60
In contrast, in October 2008, Senator Lindsey Graham, sponsor of S. 3401, the Enemy Combatant Detention Review Act, argued that while the Uighurs' case was "exceptional," their release in the United States would be a "dangerous precedent" and that detainees waiting release should be transferred to another country.61
At the start of the Obama Administration, Representative Delahunt wrote another letter to urge that the Uighurs be allowed to resettle in the United States. He also wrote that he was troubled that the Defense Department allowed PRC intelligence agents to interrogate the Uighurs at Guantanamo even while denying the same access to him and Representative Rohrabacher.62
On February 2, 2009, Defense Secretary Robert Gates signed a memorandum, on the review of the Defense Department's compliance with President Obama's "Executive Order on Review and Disposition of Individuals Detained at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base and Closure of Detention Facilities," dated January 22, 2009.63 Adm. Patrick Walsh, Vice Chief of Naval Operations, led the Defense Department team that conducted the review. Concerning the Uighurs still detained at Guantanamo, the review concluded that:
Not knowing when they might depart Guantanamo (for home or elsewhere) has almost certainly increased tension and anxiety within the detainee population. This tension is further exacerbated in one particular population—the Chinese [sic] Uighurs. For several years, the [Department of Defense] and the State Department have been struggling to transfer 17 Chinese [sic] Uighur detainees from Guantanamo to a suitable third country. Due to U.S. obligations, the U.S. cannot send them back to China. Recent court rulings increased the pressure to move these detainees out of Guantanamo as soon as a suitable third country has been selected. In addition to the Chinese [sic] Uighurs, there are now two additional detainees (Algerian, but captured in Bosnia) that the court has ordered to be released from U.S. custody. All these detainees are now housed in Camp Iguana, a holding camp that provides the greatest amount of freedom for the detainees while ensuring continued camp and U.S. naval base security. Despite increased freedoms at Camp Iguana, the detainees there continue to vocally and physically express their extreme frustration with their continued detention at Guantanamo. Therefore, the Review Team requests that emphasis be placed on providing immediate assistance within the interagency process on where to transfer these detainees (especially those currently housed in Camp Iguana).
Later, at a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee in late April 2009, Defense Secretary Robert Gates confirmed to Congress that the Administration has considered taking in some but probably not all of the 17 Uighur detainees because of worry that they would be "persecuted" if they go to China and because it is "difficult for the State Department to make the argument to other countries they should take these people that we have deemed, in this case, not to be dangerous, if we won't take any of them ourselves."64
Meanwhile, concerning the possible resettlement of the detained Uighurs in the United States, Senator Mitch McConnell stated that "the question remains, as it does with all detainees held at Guantanamo: does their release make America safer? Surely, the Administration will not release these terrorist-trained detainees onto the streets of a U.S. community before providing to Congress the legal rationale for doing so, and a guarantee of safety for American citizens."65 In the House, on May 1, Representative Frank Wolf wrote a letter to President Obama expressing concern that release of the Uighur detainees to the United States "could directly threaten the security of the American people." Wolf asked the President to declassify all intelligence regarding their capture, detention, and assessment of the threat that they might pose to Americans, before any decision to release them. Three days later, Wolf stated that it is "unacceptable" for the President to release the Uighur detainees to the United States without first briefing Congress.66
On May 7, 2009, Representative John Boehner introduced H.R. 2294, the "Keep Terrorists Out of America Act." It would seek to oppose transfers of any detainees from Guantanamo to the United States and require approval from the recipient state's governor and legislature as well as presidential certification to Congress concerning the destinations of transfers, continued prosecution and detention of detainees, and authority of federal courts to release them into the United States. A week later, the Senate Appropriations Committee reported S. 1054, Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2009, with $50 million to support relocation and disposition of detainees to locations outside of the United States after the Defense Secretary submits a plan and with a ban on use of the funds to transfer, relocate, or incarcerate detainees in the United States. The House and Senate passed, respectively on May 14 and 21, the Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2009, P.L. 111-32, inter alia, to ban use of funds to release any detainees to the United States.
Even without custody or proceedings for the Uighurs at Guantanamo, the PRC Foreign Ministry, in a press conference on June 2, 2009, branded them as "East Turkistan Islamic Movement" (or ETIM) "terrorist suspects" and expressed opposition to any country accepting the Uighurs. Then, on June 10, Palau (which has a diplomatic relationship with Taiwan, not the PRC, and close ties with the United States under the Free Compact of Association) announced its willingness to accept the remaining 17 Uighurs detained at Guantanamo. Then, suddenly, Bermuda accepted four of them on the next day. Later, in June, Palau's officials interviewed some of the 13 Uighurs left at Guantanamo, who worried about Palau's ability to protect them from China. On November 1, 2009, the Defense Department transferred six Uighurs to Palau. Then, on February 3, 2010, Switzerland announced that it would accept on humanitarian grounds two Uighurs who were in a special case (Arkin Mahmud, who developed mental health problems, and his brother and fellow detainee, Bahtiyar Mahnut, who refused to leave his brother behind), leaving five in detention. The five Uighurs remaining at Guantanamo had been taken into custody in Pakistan, after they fled the bombings in Afghanistan in late 2001.
In Congress, Representative Madeleine Bordallo of Guam wrote a letter to President Obama on June 9, to express her concern about security risks due to the possibility that the Uighurs who go to Palau could travel to Guam under the Compact of Free Association. On June 11, Representatives Delahunt and Rohrabacher wrote to Attorney General Eric Holder to urge him to oppose the PRC's demand to take the Uighur detainees. Moreover, Representative Delahunt and Rohrabacher held a series of hearings on the Uighurs, including those at Guantanamo, on June 10, June 16, and July 16, 2009.67 On June 26, 2009, the House Intelligence Committee reported H.R. 2701 (Reyes), the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY2010, with Section 351 to require an unclassified summary of intelligence on any threats posed by the Uighurs who were detained at Guantanamo. On February 26, 2010, the House passed H.R. 2701 with Section 351. On September 24, Representative Alcee Hastings introduced H.Res. 774 to express appreciation to Bermuda for accepting four of the Uighurs.
In the courts, on June 12, 2008, the Supreme Court granted habeas corpus rights to detainees at Guantanamo and ruled that challenges to their detentions be moved to a civilian federal court. Then, undermining the evidence accusing Uighurs, on June 20, 2008, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit decided that in the case of Huzaifa Parhat, the Combatant Status Review Tribunal's determination of him as an "enemy combatant" was not valid.68 The U.S. Court of Appeals ordered the United States Government to release Parhat, to transfer him, or to expeditiously convene a new Tribunal to consider evidence submitted in a manner consistent with the court's opinion. In reviewing the evidence, the Court of Appeals found that:
Parhat is an ethnic Uighur, who fled his home in the People's Republic of China in opposition to the policies of the Chinese government. It is undisputed that he is not a member of al Qaida or the Taliban, and that he has never participated in any hostile action against the United States or its allies. The Tribunal's determination that Parhat is an enemy combatant is based on its finding that he is "affiliated" with a Uighur independence group, and the further finding that the group was "associated" with al Qaida and the Taliban. The Tribunal's findings regarding the Uighur group rest, in key respects, on statements in classified State and Defense Department documents that provide no information regarding the sources of the reporting upon which the statements are based, and otherwise lack sufficient indicia of the statements' reliability. Parhat contends, with support of his own, that the Chinese government is the source of several of the key statements.
Then, on September 30, 2008, the Justice Department conceded in a filing at the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that all of the 17 remaining Uighur detainees were "no longer enemy combatants." The Justice Department notified that the status of the remaining 12 Uighur detainees will be "put into the same category" as the five original petitioners, including Parhat, who challenged their status as "enemy combatants."69 In response, on October 1, the Uighurs' counsels submitted a memorandum to the District Court, contending that the concession ended any question about each Uighur's "non-combatant status" (in contrast to the Justice Department's use of "no longer enemy combatants"). The counsels argued that the Justice Department conceded that it would not contest what the Uighurs asserted since 2005: that none of them was an enemy combatant.70 (As the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit later noted on February 18, 2009, "the government saw no material differences in its evidence against the other Uighurs, and therefore decided that none of the petitioners should be detained as enemy combatants.")
Then, at a hearing on October 7, Judge Ricardo Urbina ordered the release of the Uighurs into the United States, saying that "because the Constitution prohibits indefinite detention without cause, the Government's continued detention of Petitioners is unlawful." The Uighurs' attorneys sought their release, particularly with assistance in resettlement offered by a Uighur community in the Washington, DC, area and by a Christian, Muslim, and Jewish religious community in Tallahassee, FL. One of their lawyers said that they should not be detained "just because it's politically expedient," while the Bush White House argued against setting a "precedent" for other detainees suspected of planning the 9/11 attacks.71 On the day of the release order, the PRC branded the detainees as suspected "terrorists" and demanded that they be handed over to Beijing.
The next day, on October 8, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit temporarily blocked the order to release the Uighurs, as requested by the Justice Department which argued that they had received "military training." However, this claim about a danger undermined the State Department's efforts to find a country to accept the Uighurs as not dangerous, and Ambassador-At-Large Clint Williamson had to cancel an imminent diplomatic trip.72 On October 20, the Court of Appeals granted the Justice Department's request for a stay of the order to release the Uighurs, in a 2-1 decision. In her dissent, Judge Judith Rogers wrote that "the fact that petitioners received firearms training cannot alone show they are dangerous, unless millions of United States resident citizens who have received firearms training are to be deemed dangerous as well."73
Meanwhile, according to a review of their statements at the prison, the Uighurs expressed support for the United States as their ally but also anger at their long detention.74 After the change in their status in early October 2008, authorities at Guantanamo moved the 17 Uighurs to the low-security Camp Iguana. In its brief for the Court of Appeals on October 24, 2008, the Justice Department reported that the Uighurs were housed in "relatively unrestrictive conditions," in special communal housing with access to all areas of the camp, including outdoor recreational and picnic areas. They slept in an air-conditioned bunk house and enjoyed access to a television, VCR and DVD players, special food, showers, and reading materials. At the end of March 2009, the Uighurs were among 20 detainees (out of 240) at Camp Iguana, during a visit by an inter-agency team that included lawyers from the Departments of Justice, State, and Homeland Security.75
The Court of Appeals heard arguments on November 24, 2008. Then, on February 18, 2009, the three-judge U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit reversed Judge Urbina's order to release the Uighurs to the United States.76 As part of the summary of the legal situation of the Uighur detainees, the Court wrote:
In the Parhat case, the court ruled that the government had not presented sufficient evidence that the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement was associated with al Qaida or the Taliban, or had engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners. Parhat therefore could not be held as an enemy combatant. The government saw no material differences in its evidence against the other Uighurs, and therefore decided that none of the petitioners should be detained as enemy combatants. Releasing petitioners to their country of origin poses a problem. Petitioners fear that if they are returned to China they will face arrest, torture or execution. United States policy is not to transfer individuals to countries where they will be subject to mistreatment. Petitioners have not sought to comply with the immigration laws governing an alien's entry into the United States. Diplomatic efforts to locate an appropriate third country in which to resettle them are continuing. In the meantime, petitioners are held under the least restrictive conditions possible in the Guantanamo military base. As relief in their habeas cases, petitioners moved for an order compelling their release into the United States.
Two of the judges, Karen Henderson and Raymond Randolph ruled that Urbina overstepped his authority. The judges argued that the courts do not have the authority to review the determination of the executive branch to prevent the 17 Uighurs from entering the country. Judge Randolph wrote that "the question here is not whether petitioners should be released, but where." While concurring, Judge Judith Rogers declared that the District Court erred in granting release prematurely without first ascertaining whether immigration laws provided a valid basis for detention of the Uighurs. Then, on April 6, 2009, the Uighurs appealed to the Supreme Court. On March 1, 2010, the Supreme Court dismissed the case (Kiyemba v. Obama), in part because the Uighur detainees had offers of resettlement in another country by the time of the court's ruling.
The Olympic Games took place in Beijing on August 8-24, 2008, with no attacks against them. Before the event, there was congressional concern about whether China's tight security at the Olympic Games would result in internal repression (including human rights dissidents, Uighurs, Tibetans) or harm to safety of American citizens (including those targeted by China for expressing concerns about Tibet, Darfur, Falungong, Taiwan, Burma, North Korean refugees, Xinjiang, etc.). U.S. officials and private firms (even major U.S. Olympic sponsors) faced difficulty in getting the PRC's plans for Olympic security. One policy implication concerns whether to support or oppose holding future international events in China.
In 2007, the PRC government reportedly intensified intelligence gathering of foreigners whom it suspected as protesting its policies in a range of areas, including targeting various non-governmental organizations (NGOs).77 Issues concerned the U.S. role, including how the State Department should warn and protect U.S. citizens who travel to Beijing. On April 30, 2008, the State Department issued a general "travel alert" to advise U.S. citizens that "any large-scale public event such as the upcoming Olympic Games may present an attractive target for terrorists. There is a heightened risk that extremist groups will conduct terrorist acts within China in the near future." However, while U.S. intelligence was concerned about PRC compromise of electronic equipment, like computers and cellphones, that Americans would bring to the Games (or other times), the State and Commerce Departments reportedly declined to issue a strong warning.78 On July 30, 2008, Senator Sam Brownback introduced S.Res. 633 on China's pre-Olympic clampdown, to express the sense of the Senate on the deterioration of respect for privacy and human rights.
Another question concerned the U.S. stance on the PRC's clampdown on security with greater repression before and during major events. Some were concerned about President Bush's attendance at the Olympic Games, involving the message it sent and any pretext for China's claimed need to tighten internal security for Bush's presence. U.S. policymakers knew about the PRC's record of rounding up dissidents, peaceful protestors, and other "undesirables" ahead of and during major international events, including presidential summits. When President Bush visited Beijing on November 20, 2005, accompanying Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice acknowledged reports about crackdowns by the PRC's security forces on religious figures (with house arrests and detentions) in the days ahead of Bush's visit. Rice said that the U.S. side would raise those concerns "vociferously" with the PRC government.79 On February 28, 2008, President Bush said he would raise concerns about human rights and religious freedom in China with its ruler Hu Jintao and at the same time "enjoy a great sporting event" as a "sports fan."80
As preparations intensified for the summer Olympics in Beijing, another issue concerned the extent to which the United States, including the military, should cooperate with the PLA or the paramilitary PAP, given concerns about China's internal repression surrounding international events. In March 2007, the PRC Minister of Public Security called for "striking hard" at "hostile forces" of "ethnic separatism, religious extremism, and violent terrorism" and "evil cults" like the Falungong to have "stability" for the Olympic Games. A precedent was set in 2004, when various U.S. departments, including the Department of Defense, provided security assistance for the Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, in 2004.81 On June 22, 2006, at a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee, Brigadier General John Allen, Principal Director for Asian and Pacific Affairs, told Congress that the Defense Department might work with China on security cooperation for the Olympics. However, a year later, Deputy Under Secretary of Defense Richard Lawless testified to the House Armed Services Committee on June 13, 2007, that China did not accept assistance from the Defense Department for Olympic security.
In the lead-up to the Olympic Games, there was no clarity or confirmation about the PRC's claims of terrorist threats in China. The PRC regime has tended to selectively target violent incidents involving Uighurs and Tibetans as "terrorism" but not other violent attacks committed by Hans (ethnic Chinese people). After a Tibetan riot and security crackdown in Lhasa in March 2008, the PRC called the Tibetan Youth Congress "terrorist."82
In 2007, just as PRC preparations and propaganda for Olympic security intensified, the PRC claimed that on January 5, police destroyed a "terrorist training camp" run by ETIM in Xinjiang near the border with Pakistan, killed 18 "terrorists," and captured 17 others (who were later sentenced to death, suspended death sentences, or life imprisonment). However, the civilian Public Security police reportedly carried out the action, not the paramilitary People's Armed Police (PAP). As a specialist wrote, the question was "whether China really confronts a serious threat of terrorism in Xinjiang."83 Visiting Beijing in June 2007, FBI Assistant Director for International Operations Thomas Fuentes said that the FBI was still assessing the validity of the PRC's claims about the terrorist threat.84 The State Department reported that there were no acts of international terrorism in China in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, or 2007. The National Counterterrorism Center under the Director of National Intelligence did not report any terrorist attacks in the PRC in 2007. "Terrorism" was defined as "premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents."85
The next year, the PRC claimed that police in January 2008 raided a house in Urumqi in Xinjiang, killing two people and capturing 15 others who were Uighur separatists carrying out "terrorist acts." Despite calling them "terrorists," the Xinjiang police found only axes, books, and knives (which are common traditional items in Uighur culture).86 Again, the PAP was not involved in this reported raid by the civilian police. The U.S.-based Uyghur American Association called for an independent investigation of those claims and defended efforts of the Uighur people as peaceful. A reporter who visited the site of the raid in April found residents of the apartment building who reported that nothing dramatically dangerous had happened.87 Then, in March 2008, the PRC claimed that a Uighur woman was an "East Turkestan element" who tried to blow up a plane flying from Urumqi to Beijing. A news article in New Delhi reported that the incident had a connection to terrorists in Pakistan, but the sophistication of that attempt remained disputable.88 Also in March, soon after riots in Tibet, hundreds protested in the southern Xinjiang city of Khotan after police returned the body of a Uighur man who died in custody.89
However, just the next month in April, the city of Urumqi (including the airport and railroad station) and flights between Urumqi and Beijing were generally calm without stringent security. A few civilian policemen carried sub-machine guns, and the airport banned small bottles of shampoo and other liquids in carry-on bags.
In June 2008, the Olympic torch relay went though Xinjiang with no major incident, while there were crackdowns that prompted an attack on at least one police station.90 In July, PRC and Hong Kong media reported tightened security checks for roads, railways, and airports throughout Xinjiang, amid a claimed need to protect the Olympics. Uighurs complained of racial profiling that targeted them at airports or train stations and that confiscated their passports to ban travel.91
Just before the Olympic Games and in the Han areas of China, up to 30,000 people protested and burned police cars in southern Guizhou province on June 28, and a man from Beijing attacked a police station in Shanghai, killing six policemen on July 1, 2008. He reportedly was armed with a knife, a hammer, and homemade explosive devices. PRC media reported that he sought revenge for harsh police interrogation of him in 2007. The PRC did not call these attacks "terrorism."92
But in Xinjiang, on July 9, 2008, official PRC media asserted in an English-language report that the police killed and arrested criminals who were in a "holy war" training group. However, the original Chinese-language news article in Urumqi called them criminals and did not refer to any terrorist connections. On the same day, Uighur sources reported that the PRC regime forced about 10,000 Uighurs in Kashgar (Kashi) to watch a mass sentencing and execution rally.93 On July 10, Urumqi's local Public Security officials claimed that they had cracked five "terrorist groups" and detained 82 "terrorists" in the first six months of 2008. On July 14, the local police in Kashgar in Xinjiang claimed that they had eliminated 12 "terrorist" gangs.
Nevertheless, the PRC regime downplayed ostensible terrorist threats in videos posted on the Internet in 2008 that cited Uighur grievances in China and targeted the Olympic Games. On June 26, 2008, a video was posted on YouTube with a message in Uighur threatening violence at the Olympic Games in Beijing issued under the name of the Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP), which could be ETIM, by a masked and armed man calling himself Seyfullah. However, instead of citing this to bolster its claims about the Uighurs, the PRC did not play up the development. Only a PRC official media report on July 3 cited a Vice Minister of Public Security as mentioning an "East Turkistan" threat on the Internet. Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer reacted by supporting peaceful and successful Olympic Games in Beijing.94
Again on July 25, a self-described TIP leader, Seyfullah, posted another video in Uyghur on YouTube, trying to stop the Olympic Games and claiming credit for four incidents in various cities in China (that were not Beijing) supposedly on May 5, May 17, July 17, and July 21. Contrary to its usual hyping of an "East Turkestan" terrorist threat, the PRC government and its experts promptly denied the TIP leader's claims.95 In another YouTube video dated August 1, a man identified as the head of TIP's Religious Education Department, Abdullah Mensur, warned Muslims against going to the Olympic Games in Beijing.
However, in those incidents outside of Xinjiang and in eastern and southern cities not hosting the Olympic Games, except for Shanghai, the PRC did not call them "terrorist" acts. Moreover, the video incorrectly named an explosion in Guangzhou on July 17. There was an explosion reported in Guangzhou, but it was on March 13 and involved migrant workers unloading trucks when cargo exploded and killed seven people. On May 5, a bus reportedly exploded in Shanghai, killing three people. On May 17, a gambler who lost money reportedly drove a tractor with explosives to target a gambling site in Wenzhou and killed 17 people. In another incident that the video did not mention, on July 2, a man reportedly seeking revenge caused an explosion at a government office in Hunan province that injured 12 people. On July 21, bombs exploded in two buses in Kunming, Yunnan province, killing two people. The PRC Public Security Ministry called the incident "sabotage," not terrorism.
Then, on August 4, four days before the start of the Olympics in Beijing, in the western-most city of Kashgar (Kashi) in Xinjiang, two men drove a truck into a group of PAP Border Security Guards and threw two bombs, killing 16 of them. Immediately, PRC official media reported the violent incident as "suspected terrorism" and raised an alleged connection to "East Turkistan" terrorists. The police said they caught two Uighur men from Kashgar, a vegetable vendor and taxi driver, who were found with "home-made" bombs, a hand-gun, and knives, and were waging a "holy war." Kashgar's Communist Party Secretary said on August 5 that the incident was a premeditated "terrorist attack." However, the director of Xinjiang's Public Security Department said that the police did not have proof that a terrorist organization like ETIM was responsible for the incident. He also had to apologize to two Japanese journalists trying to cover the incident whom PAP guards detained and beat in a hotel, prompting Japan's diplomatic protest.96 Foreign eye-witnesses reported that the attackers wore the same PAP uniforms as the security personnel.97
(In its report on terrorism in 2008, the National Counterterrorism Center under the Director of National Intelligence reported that China was one of the countries that experienced their first "high-fatality attack" perpetrated by Sunni extremists, based on data since 2004. Also, the report included the incident on August 4, 2008, in Kashgar, Xinjiang, as one of the worldwide "high-fatality terror attacks." The report noted that "no group claimed responsibility, although it was widely reported that the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) was responsible."98)
On August 10, 2008 in the town of Kuqa in Xinjiang, according to PRC state-owned media, 15 male and female assailants threw out of vehicles some home-made bombs that targeted the Public Security Bureau, government offices, and businesses. The bombs killed one security guard and one Uighur bystander. The police again prevented foreign news about what occurred by detaining Japanese reporters and deleting their photographs.99 Then, two days later, on August 12, attackers stabbed to death three guards at a security checkpoint at Yamanya town near Kashgar, where an attack occurred on August 4. The authorities responded with police and paramilitary manhunts.
On August 13, the PRC Foreign Ministry quickly blamed "East Turkistan" forces even while noting that the incidents were still under investigation. A PRC government intelligence-related analyst claimed that threats increased in Xinjiang with coordinated multiple bombings, crude home-made bombs, female attackers, and "suicide bombers." However, PRC media had reported such alleged attacks in the 1990s. Further, initial reports noted that the alleged attackers threw the bombs on August 10. Also, PRC officials accused the two (of 15) alleged attackers who died in an explosion to be "terrorists" and "suicide bombers," but it was not known whether they intended to blow themselves up. Moreover, the three attacks in Xinjiang in August 2008 killed 21 people and targeted primarily security forces and not civilians, contrary to the bombings in 1997 in Urumqi and earlier in 2008 in Shanghai and Kunming.
Furthermore, there was a bombing incident on a bus in Guangzhou on August 21, 2008, during the Olympic Games, reported by a newspaper in Hong Kong, but the PRC media did not report on it until August 24 (the last day of the Olympic Games) and PRC authorities deleted postings about it on the Internet. On May 26, 2009, a court sentenced to six years in prison a man from the southern province of Guangxi who allegedly planted the bomb on a bus. Conflicting reports said that the police detonated the bomb before it was set off but also that it exploded a hole in the bus with no injury.100 The incident did not involve a Uighur, and the PRC did not call it "terrorism."
In the violent incidents in 2008, the first reported bombings in Xinjiang since 1997, a critical factor could be the Taliban's resurgence in Pakistan and Afghanistan since mid-2006 that radicalized some disaffected Uighurs in that border area.101 Many multinational militants have been known to operate in the area that also borders Xinjiang. Since 1997, if not earlier, Pakistani militants crossing into China have raised concerns in Beijing.102 Before the Olympic Games in 2008, the PRC ambassador in Islamabad said that ETIM was active in Pakistan, warning of harm to the PRC-Pakistan relationship.103 During the Olympic Games, the PRC arrested 35 Pakistanis accused of planning to attack the Games, which the Foreign Ministry did not deny.104 After the Olympics, in the spring of 2009, the PRC government, including Minister of Public Security Meng Jianzhu, asserted to Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari that ETIM put its "military headquarters" in Pakistan's tribal areas and was "planning to attack China on the 60th anniversary celebration of the communist revolution in October," according to Pakistani politician Mushahid Hussain. Moreover, Pakistan reportedly extradited to China nine alleged "militants" from Xinjiang who were arrested in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).105
Alternatively, it was also possible that PRC security precipitated unrest in Xinjiang ahead of August 2008 for a pre-Olympic crackdown, similar to a suspected strategy employed in Tibet surrounding the March 2008 riots, so as not to upset its determined "successful" Olympics. PRC officials have cited the use of "preemptive strikes" in "stability maintenance" in Xinjiang. The violence also could have been reactions to the pre-Olympic security crackdowns that raised resentment. Some Uighurs might have taken advantage of the Games to publicize their plight.
Despite the Internet videos and incidents in Xinjiang, the Olympics took place on August 8-24, 2008, with no violence against the Games in Beijing. In the lead-up to the Games with increasing voices opposing PRC policies, some were concerned that the PRC would not be able to effectively maintain control and security at the Olympic Games. Nevertheless, as the PRC authorities severely tightened security around China, the regime showed a greater likelihood in over-reacting to any disturbances, even peaceful protests, by foreigners or PRC citizens. The PRC deployed immense security forces comprised of the military (PLA), paramilitary People's Armed Police (PAP), and civilian police and totaling 110,000 to tighten control. Those PLA forces included ground, air, and naval units. Indeed, while the PRC authorities exercised initial restraint against domestic and foreign protesters (who advocated for a free Tibet), agents violently beat up and detained some foreign reporters. In addition to the above-mentioned beatings and detentions by security forces of Japanese reporters in Xinjiang, PRC police beat up or forcefully detained Hong Kong reporters covering a sale of Olympic tickets in late July plus British and U.S. journalists covering pro-Tibet protests during the Games.106
On October 21, 2008, the PRC's Ministry of Public Security (MPS) issued its second list of alleged terrorists belonging to ETIM (after the first in December 2003), seeking to capture in China or abroad eight Uighurs wanted for having plotted "terrorist attacks" against the Olympic Games. Three days later, a video was posted to YouTube that identified itself as a message from TIP with a still picture of "Military Commander Seyfullah." The message in Uyghur rebutted the MPS's charges, questioning the accuracy of the identification of suspects and defending the East Turkistan Muslim's "jihad" against "Chinese Communist invaders."107
In February 2009, PRC authorities launched a campaign to demolish the Uighurs' old town in Kashgar and force families from their homes and cultural center, relocating 42% of Kashgar to new buildings.108 On April 9, PRC authorities in Kashgar executed two local Uighur men for the alleged attack on August 4, 2008, with their death sentence publicly announced to about 4,000 people assembled in a stadium followed by their execution out of public view. The official news media's report did not mention the ETIM organization in declaring their execution.109 In September 2009, PRC authorities stepped up the assimilation policy by closing schools in townships and villages to merge students into larger, county-level schools and to force Uighur students to learn the Mandarin (Chinese) language at a younger age instead of their Uighur language.110 While learning Mandarin could help Uighurs economically, Uighurs have said that their Turkic-based language historically promoted trade and other ties with neighboring Central Asia and with Europe. Also, critics said that rather than Uighur nationalism, the Han's extreme nationalism imposed superiority and assimilation that continued to exacerbate resentment.
Outside of Xinjiang, there have been numerous violent incidents reported in China that the PRC authorities did not label as "terrorism" or "suicide bombings." From January 2006 to July 2009, PRC law-enforcement authorities carried out a nationwide campaign to target organized crime. The campaign reportedly involved the convictions of 12,796 people in gangs connected with 1,171 cases of organized crime, detentions of over 89,000 people, and over 108,000 other cases.111 Moreover, China's provinces have reported widespread seizures of firearms and explosives, attacks on police, and fires or explosions in buses. For example, on June 5, 2009, a fire in one bus in Chengdu, Sichuan province, resulted in the deaths of 28 people. PRC media reported that an unemployed man (with a Han name) was the "arsonist" who started the blaze and killed himself, not a "terrorist" or "suicide-bomber." In Chongqing, another city in Sichuan, a bus reportedly caught on fire or exploded on September 3, 2009, injuring seven riders.
There has been congressional oversight of sanctions banning arms sales and export of crime control equipment to China. The President has the options of strictly maintaining the sanctions, permanently waiving sanctions, or selectively waiving sanctions imposed after the 1989 Tiananmen Crackdown (Section 902 of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for FYs 1990 and 1991, P.L. 101-246), which deny exports of defense articles/services (including helicopters or related parts), crime control equipment, and satellites. President Bush issued a waiver of those sanctions on January 9, 2002 (to export a bomb containment and disposal unit for the Shanghai fire department to prevent terrorist bombings) and again on January 25, 2002 (to consider export licenses for equipment to clean up chemical weapons in China left by Japan in World War II).
More presidential waivers were considered for exports of equipment for the Olympic Games in Beijing in August 2008, but there were concerns about contributing to China's internal repression. In May 2005, China held its first exhibition on counterterrorism equipment, and over 200 U.S. and other foreign companies displayed their arms and equipment.112 At a hearing of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) on February 27, 2008, its chairman, Representative Sander Levin, expressed concerns that "any high-technology surveillance equipment will be left in the hands of China's public security and state security organ, who may use them to monitor political activists, religious practitioners, and members of certain ethnic minority groups."113 The Bush Administration reportedly approved the export of sensitive equipment and expertise to PRC security and PLA forces (for which no presidential waiver was needed, according to the State Department). The equipment included that used to detect explosives and radiation. Also, the Energy Department's National Nuclear Security Administration sent a Nuclear Emergency Support Team (NEST) to China to help in detection of a radiological bomb.114 On June 30, 2008, President Bush notified Congress that he waived temporarily the sanction on munitions exports to allow athletes in shooting competitions to bring firearms and U.S. film crews to bring mobile high definition television camera systems with military gyroscopes to the Olympic Games, after which the equipment would be returned to the United States.
Further, another law could affect U.S. policy on whether to allow military transfers to the PRC. Section 6 of the Arms Export Control Act (P.L. 90-629) prohibits arms sales governed by the Act to any country that is determined by the President to be engaged in a pattern of intimidation or harassment directed against individuals in the United States. There are congressional and other concerns about suspected PRC-directed intimidation or harassment on U.S. soil. For example, Representative Frank Wolf raised concern about a collision between a car connected to the PRC government and Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer's car, injuring her in 2006 in northern Virginia. Representative Wolf also noted that the PRC government verbally harassed his staff on multiple occasions because of his invitations to Rebiya Kadeer to speak on Capitol Hill. Reportedly, PRC diplomats use informants in Uighur communities in Germany, Sweden, the United States, and elsewhere. In January 2010, the PRC withdrew two films in retaliation after a private film festival in Palm Springs, CA, refused the PRC's demand to cancel a movie about Tibet. In 2010, Defense Secretary Robert Gates voiced U.S. objection to any effort to intimidate U.S. corporations engaged in legitimate economic activity, particularly in the South China Sea.115
In his 2002 State of the Union speech, President Bush stressed the twin threats of terrorism and weapons proliferation, indicating a strong stance on proliferation problems with the PRC and others. PRC entities have reportedly transferred missile and/or chemical weapons technology to countries that the State Department says support terrorism, like Iran and North Korea. On numerous occasions, the Administration has imposed sanctions for weapons proliferation by PRC entities. However, the Administration has stressed China's cooperation at the Six-Party Talks on North Korea's nuclear weapons and at the U.N. Security Council on sanctions against Iran, rather than China's transfers.116 China has not joined the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) announced by President Bush on May 31, 2003. In its Final Report issued on July 22, 2004, the 9/11 Commission urged that the United States encourage China (and Russia) to join the PSI, among many recommendations. The 110th Congress considered H.R. 1, the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007. The House-passed bill of January 9, 2007, noted that the Commission called on China to participate in PSI. The Senate passed its bill on July 9 without such language. The Conference Report of July 25 adopted the House provisions on the commission's recommendations and on the sense of Congress that the President should expand and strengthen the PSI. The bill became P.L. 110-53 on August 3, 2007.
The Bush Administration also sought China's cooperation in the Container Security Initiative (CSI) of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Launched in January 2002, CSI looked at PRC ports (Shanghai and Shenzhen) among the top 20 foreign ports proposed for U.S. screening of manifests and inspections of containers before U.S.-bound shipping. On July 29, 2003, China agreed to join CSI. However, only after this U.S.-PRC agreement did the Bush Administration discuss an agreement with Taiwan to cover the last of the 20 ports: Kaohsiung. The U.S. CSI team became operational in Shanghai in April 2005, and that CSI program underwent its first six-month review by late summer. That CSI program has been compared to the CSI experience with more cooperative and efficient customs authorities in Hong Kong, cooperation that became operational in 2002.117 In November 2005, the United States and the PRC signed an agreement, as part of the Megaports Initiative of the Energy Department's National Nuclear Security Administration, to install equipment at China's ports to detect nuclear and other radioactive material that could be used for nuclear weapons and "dirty bombs."
While there have been no counterterrorism operations conducted with the PLA, the Pentagon has cautiously resumed a military-to-military relationship with China. In 2001, the Bush Administration limited contacts with the PLA after a Pentagon review started and the EP-3 aircraft collision crisis occurred. Then, for the first time under the Bush Administration, the Pentagon and the PLA again held Defense Consultative Talks (DCT) on December 9, 2002. There were visits by China's Defense Minister, General Cao Gangchuan, in October 2003 and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard Myers, in January 2004. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld visited China in October 2005, the first visit by a defense secretary since William Cohen's visit in 2000 and long sought by the PLA for the resumption of a military relationship. Relevant legislation for congressional oversight includes the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for FYs 1990-1991 (P.L. 101-246); National Defense Authorization Act for FY2000 (P.L. 106-65); and National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006 (P.L. 109-163).118
However, there is a debate about the extent to which U.S. forces should help the PLA's modernization, including through combined exercises. Some have urged caution in military cooperation with China on this front of counterterrorism, while others see benefits for the relationship with China. Senator Bob Smith and Representative Dana Rohrabacher wrote Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld in late 2001, to express concerns about renewed military contacts with China. They argued that "China is not a good prospect for counter-terrorism cooperation," because of concerns that China has practiced internal repression in the name of counterterrorism and has supplied technology to rogue regimes and state sponsors of terrorism.119 In contrast, a 2004 report by Rand urged a program of security management with China that includes counterterrorism as one of three components.120
China increased its influence in international counterterrorism cooperation through a Central Asian group. After the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, China in April 1996 sponsored a "Shanghai Five" meeting in Shanghai with Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan to sign an agreement on military confidence building measures. By 1998, at their meeting in Almaty, Kazakhstan, the countries added a ban on allowing the use of one's territory for activities that undermine the sovereignty, security, and social order of another. By 2000, when PLA General Chi Haotian, a Vice Chairman of the Central Military Commission, attended the first defense ministers' meeting and PRC ruler Jiang Zemin attended a summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, China shifted the five nations' counterterrorism approach to target what it combined as the threat of the "three evil forces" of religious extremism, national separatism, and international terrorism. In Shanghai in June 2001, the group added Uzbekistan and became the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, China's influence expanded in the SCO along with increased international attention to terrorism. China has granted military assistance to Central Asian countries. The PRC also has operationalized the fight with its military as it sought lessons for modernization. Since 2002, the PLA has conducted combined military exercises in Xinjiang with Central Asian countries and with Russia under the guise of combating terrorists.
However, the SCO summits in 2005 and 2006 raised U.S. concerns, despite the SCO's claim to be a counterterrorism group. In addition to Mongolia, the countries of India, Pakistan, and Iran were invited as observers in 2005. The SCO summit issued a declaration on July 5, 2005, that called for a "deadline" for the counterterrorism coalition's "temporary" use of facilities and military presence in SCO countries, because major military operations against terrorists ended in Afghanistan, they claimed. U.S. armed forces were deployed at bases in Uzbekistan until 2005 and have maintained an airbase in Kyrgyzstan, raising China's suspicions about U.S. military deployments in Central Asia and a perceived U.S. encirclement campaign. PRC ruler Hu Jintao also argued that Central Asian countries could handle their own internal and regional affairs. General Richard Myers, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, responded on July 14, 2005, that China and Russia were "trying to bully" the Central Asian countries. A week later, China's official People's Daily accused General Myers of showing "arrogance" and U.S. intentions to "permanently meddle" and be "strategically dominant" in Central Asia.
During the 109th Congress, on July 19, 2005, the House passed (by voice vote) Representative Tom Lantos's amendment to the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for FYs 2006 and 2007 (H.R. 2601). The language expressed the congressional concern that the SCO's declaration called for a deadline for deployments in Central Asia and called on the President and Secretaries of Defense and State to open a dialogue with SCO countries about the use of bases there. The House passed H.R. 2601 (by 351-78) on July 20, 2005, whereas the Senate did not vote on it.
The PRC hosted a summit of SCO members in Shanghai on June 15, 2006, that included Iran as an observer in an ostensibly counterterrorism group. The State Department criticized that inclusion of Iran, a state sponsor of terrorism, as running "counter" to the international fight against terrorism. Ahead of the SCO summit in Bishkek in August 2007, the PRC's official newspaper published an article calling for the U.S. military to withdraw from the base in Kyrgyzstan. Also, the Deputy Speaker of the Kyrgyz parliament said he expected pressure from Russia and China on his government concerning the use of the Manas air base by the U.S. military.121 In August 2007, the PLA and Russian forces held a combined counterterrorism exercise called "Peace Mission 2007" under the SCO's sponsorship in Chelyabinsk in Russia's Ural Mountains and in Urumqi in Xinjiang. The exercise targeted what China called the "three evil forces." In 2008, Iran applied to be a SCO member.
The U.S. military and NATO have been concerned about alternative logistical supply routes to support the war in Afghanistan, given increasing instability in Pakistan, south of Afghanistan. Also, a question arose about possible cooperation from China after Kyrgyzstan notified the United States in February 2009 of the planned closure of Manas Air Base. The United States proposed to the PRC to open a route for non-combat supplies to northern Afghanistan, but there has been no progress. China has a short, 57-mile-long border with Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor that is narrow and features difficult mountainous terrain. Consideration of this option became less urgent after Kyrgyzstan in June 2009 backed off from its threat to evict U.S. forces from Manas. Moreover, at their summit in Moscow in July, Presidents Barack Obama and Dmitry Medvedev agreed to provide for transits of lethal supplies through Russia.
Then also in July 2009, there were violent ethnic clashes between the Uighur people and Han (Chinese) people in China's northwestern region of Xinjiang, which has a short border with Afghanistan's northeastern Wakhan Corridor. The unrest highlighted the risks of possible military cooperation with China where there have been concerns about its repression against the minority Muslim Uighurs and where tensions reportedly stayed high for at least months following the riots and subsequent crackdown. As discussed above, some Hans in Urumqi reportedly directed anger even at the PLA (for perceived failures to protect Hans and take even tougher actions against the Uighurs). China has demanded foreign actions against Uighurs and extradition of Uighurs in U.S. custody, as discussed above. Unique in Xinjiang, the PRC's armed forces involve three types: the People's Liberation Army (PLA), People's Armed Police (PAP), and Production and Construction Corps (PCC). In May 2010, the PCC alone reportedly totaled 2.5 million in personnel.
Furthermore, the PRC-Russian "Peace Mission 2009" military exercise in July 2009 began just after the unrest in Xinjiang that involved the use of the paramilitary PAP, primarily, and also the PLA, including its facilities to detain people after the crackdown filled Urumqi's prisons, as discussed above.122 During the combined exercise, the PLA's Chief of General Staff Chen Bingde said in an interview with a pro-PRC TV program based in Hong Kong that the PLA had the capability and would consider deploying troops, under U.N. authority, to Central Asian countries to fight "East Turkistan elements" outside of China. Also, the newspaper of Russia's defense ministry reported that an exercise in the PLA's Shenyang Military Region involved forces from China and Russia, under U.N. authority, deploying to a third nation in an "anti-terrorism" operation to fight "separatist" forces. Moreover, an official and popular newspaper in China published an article on December 14, 2009, calling for China to "control" Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor. A researcher at the PLA's Academy of Military Science (AMS) wrote in 2010 about foreign deployments of PLA forces in part to combat vague "East Turkistan" organizations.123
The Obama Administration also has proposed to China that it contribute counter-narcotics and humanitarian assistance to stabilize Afghanistan, in addition to PRC economic investments which benefit from the security provided by the United States and other countries. At a conference in Tokyo on January 21, 2002, on reconstruction aid to Afghanistan, China pledged only $1 million, in addition to humanitarian goods worth $3.6 million. But three days later, PRC leader Jiang Zemin promised to visiting Afghan interim leader Hamid Karzai additional reconstruction aid of $150 million spread over four to five years. Of this $150 million, China reportedly offered $47 million by 2003 and offered $15 million in 2004.124 However, at an international meeting on reconstruction in Afghanistan that was held in Istanbul in January 2010, PRC Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said that PRC aid since 2002 consisted of cancelling debts owed by Afghanistan, providing a total of $132 million in grants, and converting $75 million from concessional loans into grants from 2009 to 2014. Also, China started major projects (including building a hospital and an irrigation project) and training for over 500 Afghan officials.125 It was unclear whether these programs contributed to the gross values of total assistance, with aid offered in kind or payments. The PRC also has sent workers, partly to build roads and schools in Afghanistan.
As agreed in December 2007, the China Metallurgical Group Corporation (MCC) and Jiangxi Copper Company invested in Afghanistan's largest development project (worth $3-4 billion) centered on the Aynak copper mine. In a speech on September 24, 2009, Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg mentioned China's investment in the Aynak copper mine as a case of cooperation. However, the PRC's MCC allegedly paid $808 million in a "signing bonus" and a $30 million bribe to the Afghan minister of mines for the 30-year lease.126 While economic development would help stability, this reported practice exacerbated corruption in Kabul and countered U.S. goals of better governance in Afghanistan.
In addition to concerns about PRC contributions and suspected corruption, at the S&ED in July 2009, the United States pressed for increased PRC coordination to promote stability and development in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In May 2010, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert Blake visited Beijing for a U.S.-China Sub-dialogue on South Asia. On the goal of defeating Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Blake sought the PRC's greater openness about its aid and coordination with U.S. efforts, in part to avoid duplication. He did not discuss any military assistance from the PRC, but he gave assurances that U.S. forces would not withdraw "precipitously" from Afghanistan. Days later, Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg said that the United States welcomed the PRC's investments in Afghanistan, as long as the investments were transparent and conformed to international standards.127
Concerning any military cooperation by the People's Liberation Army (PLA), the commanders of the Central and Pacific Commands, General Tommy Franks and Admiral Dennis Blair, separately confirmed in April 2002 that China did not provide military cooperation (nor was it requested) in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan (e.g., basing, staging, or overflight) and that its shared intelligence was not specific enough, particularly as compared to cooperation from the Philippines, Singapore, and Malaysia.128 The Pentagon's June 2002 report on foreign contributions in the counterterrorism war did not include China among the 50 countries in the coalition.129 After President Obama announced on December 1, 2009, that he would deploy 30,000 additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan, China did not pledge troops. Separately, the PLA started in September 2009 to provide military training in China on clearing mines to the Afghan National Army (ANA), including through the offer of "scholarships" and equipment.130
The United States has discussed with China parallel pressure on Pakistan with which China is considered to have close military and intelligence ties. A risk could be that the PRC could fuel anti-Americanism. The pressure on Pakistan to counter terrorists and the Taliban increased after the attack in Mumbai, India, in November 2008. Pakistan's Interior Minister confirmed in February 2009 that some of plotters were in Pakistan. The CIA reportedly brokered intelligence-sharing between India and Pakistan.131 Also in February, Pakistan's President visited Shanghai and briefed PRC President Hu Jintao on the phone about Pakistan's willingness to improve its relationship with India.132 Deputy Secretary of State Steinberg claimed in a speech on September 24 that the PRC helped to encourage Pakistan to take stronger measures against extremists. The Obama Administration also looked to China to expand humanitarian aid and build up governance in Pakistan. In May 2010, the PRC Defense Minister, General Liang Guanglie, visited Pakistan, and signed three Memorandums of Understanding that provided for military exercises, four PRC trainer aircraft, and PRC aid (valued at US$8.8 million). On July 3, 2010, in the middle of China, air and ground forces of the two militaries started their third combined exercise that focused on fighting terrorists and that coincided with the first anniversary of the unrest in Urumqi in July 2009. The PLA could deploy forces to Pakistan in the future. During the exercise, Pakistan's President visited the PRC to seek more economic investments beyond about 120 PRC companies. However, since he noted there were already 10,000 PRC workers in Pakistan, the PRC's investments have meant lost job opportunities for local Pakistanis. Moreover, PRC leader Hu asked Pakistan to protect the security of PRC people, which could divert forces from fighting militants.
Further, by 2010, there has been increased concern about cyber threats originating from the PRC that stole sensitive information on the movements and operational security of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, including compromising the computers of India's government.133 Meanwhile, India's concerns heightened about China's increased influence in Central and South Asia. The PRC could encourage or frustrate reconciliation between India and Pakistan. In any case, by April 2010, Pakistan's military redeployed 100,000 troops from its eastern border facing India to fight the Taliban near the western border with Afghanistan. Nonetheless, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy cautioned that "Pakistan's strategic concerns about India remain preeminent," in her testimony to the House Armed Services Committee.134
Since 2006, U.S. concern has increased about China-origin weapons that have been found in the conflicts in the Middle East or in Afghanistan (and Iraq) involving U.S. and allied forces, as part of the broader threat posed by Iran and its arms transfers to terrorist forces.
On July 14, 2006, Hezbollah used C-802 anti-ship cruise missiles to hit an Israeli naval ship off Lebanon, an attack that killed four crewmembers, according to surprised U.S. and Israeli officials. (Hezbollah is a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) and a major political faction in Lebanon with an armed wing that, in the past, committed acts of terrorism.) A second missile sank a Cambodian merchant ship. Iran allegedly armed Hezbollah with C-802 missiles first acquired from China in the 1990s and/or clones of them with the Noor name.135
PRC-made weapons found in Afghanistan, mainly small arms and ammunition, have included man-portable anti-aircraft missiles (such as the HN-5 missiles); armor-piercing ammunition; rocket propelled grenades; artillery rockets; sniper rifles; and components for weapons. In late 2001, PRC-origin (produced by the state-owned defense-industrial company, NORINCO) multiple rocket launchers (using 107 mm rockets) were found in Afghanistan. Also, in late 2001 to spring 2002, caches of PRC-origin HN-5 missiles, ammunition, and rocket propelled grenades were discovered. In June 2007, the Taliban used PRC-made HN-5 surface-to-air missiles in Afghanistan. In some cases, tracing to the producer of the arms is challenged by the intentional removal of serial numbers from the weapons or parts. Also adding to the challenge of identifying the source of weapons is the fact that Iran has manufactured an anti-aircraft missile, called the Misagh-1, that is similar to the QW-1 anti-air missile made by the PRC's state-owned, defense industrial company, the China Precision Machinery Import and Export Corporation (CPMIEC).136
Even while U.S. officials pointed to China as the origin of some of the weaponry found in Afghanistan, another question concerned whether the supplies were new (since Operation Enduring Freedom began in 2001) or left over from the years when various countries transferred weapons to Mujahedin fighters in Afghanistan during its Soviet occupation in the 1980s or later in the 1990s. China's CPMIEC exported the HN-5 anti-aircraft missiles for years, and China previously supplied them to the Mujahedin in Afghanistan, Iran, and other countries.137 Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told reporters in August 2002 that Afghanistan was "filled with weapons" and that "you do find things from China, but you find them from country after country after country." He added, "a lot of it is quite old and probably not stable."138 In September 2007, an Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman said that his government seized various types of arms, including PRC weapons, but did not have evidence of new PRC arms being transferred to the Taliban.139 Aside from the explanation of left-over caches, PRC-made weapons were not the only type uncovered. In the same month, another Afghan official announced that arms made in China, Iran, and Russia were discovered in the city of Herat, near the western border with Iran.140
In its approach, the Bush Administration focused concerns and questions on Iran, rather than China, and how the weapons ended up in Afghanistan (some through Iran), rather than where they were made (in China, Iran, or other countries). Focusing on Iran, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns specifically said on June 13, 2007: "There's irrefutable evidence the Iranians are now [transferring arms to the Taliban in Afghanistan], and it's a pattern of activity.... It's coming from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps command, which is a basic unit of the Iranian government." After just retiring as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense, Richard Lawless told reporters on July 6 that "Identifying how [the weapons] came through Iran [into Afghanistan] and who is facilitating that transit through Iran is the key issue for us right now. It is really not the issue of where they ultimately were manufactured." Nonetheless, despite the primary focus on Iran, the Administration sent demarches to Beijing. Lawless confirmed that the United States expressed concerns to China about exercising greater care in its arms sales to Iran. The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for East Asia also said on July 12, that the United States "repeatedly asked China to stop its transfers to Iran of conventional weapons and technologies," but Beijing's response was "irresponsible." He also warned, "partners do not provide weapons to people who support those who kill our troops and those of our allies." While in Kabul on September 11, Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte acknowledged that he raised concerns with China about its arms sales to Iran and requested that China refrain from signing any new arms sales contracts with Iran.141 The United Kingdom also asked Beijing about the Taliban's use of PRC weapons against U.K. troops in Afghanistan.142
It was uncertain as to whether China stopped arms transfers to Iran or prevented any new arms sales contracts with Iran, as the United States urged. The PRC did not deny its arms sales to Iran and indeed conveyed a sense of "business as usual." In 2007, when questioned by reporters about PRC arms sales to Iran that were found in Afghanistan (and Iraq), the PRC Foreign Ministry characterized its arms sales as "normal" military trade and cooperation with other countries. The ministry stated China's position that its arms sales were beyond reproach and responsible because China follows these "principles" for arms exports: they are for legitimate self-defense; they do not undermine international peace and stability; they do not interfere in the internal affairs of the recipients; and they are exported only to sovereign countries. In addition, the Foreign Ministry claimed that China stipulated another condition: no re-transfer to a third party without PRC permission. The ministry also argued that China complied with international laws and United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions.143
However, China could contend compliance with the letter of UNSC resolutions because China (along with Russia) objected to UNSC sanctions targeting Iran's arms imports. Thus, only after diplomatic negotiations on additional sanctions against Iran for its nuclear enrichment program (during which China and Russia objected to banning Iran's arms imports and export credit guarantees for doing business in Iran),144 China voted with all other UNSC members on March 24, 2007, for Resolution 1747, which included a ban on Iran's arms exports (not imports).
Aside from the issue of whether the PRC was responsive to U.S. and other nations' concerns, the complicity of China's government in allowing or acquiescing in the arms flow to Iran was another question. Part of that question concerned whether the PLA was involved. The arms manufacturers were PRC state-owned defense-industrial plants, rather than the PLA itself, although the PLA might have a role in any vetting of the arms exports. Regardless of whether the PRC government did or did not know about these arms sales to Iran or PRC weapons found in Afghanistan and Iraq, U.S. demarches raised the problem with Beijing.
Continuing through 2008, the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) testified to Congress that the PRC's arms sales in the Middle East were "destabilizing" and "a threat" to U.S. forces, while missile sales to Iran posed a "threat to U.S. forces in the Persian Gulf."145 At a hearing in June 2008, Defense Department officials testified to Congress that although the United States demanded that the PRC stop transfers that violated U.N. sanctions, nonproliferation norms, and PRC law, U.S. efforts met with "mixed results." China's cooperation was "uneven" and it needed to act "responsibly." The officials testified that there were particular concerns about PRC sales of conventional weapons to Iran, a "country that supports terrorism and groups in Iraq, Lebanon, and Afghanistan that target and kill Americans and our allies."146
Moreover, the Secretary of Defense reported to Congress in March 2009 that China's weapons supplied to Iran were then transferred to terrorist organizations in Iraq and Afghanistan, where U.S. troops fought.147 The serious situation required continued U.S. monitoring. In July 2009, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) seized a cargo ship (ANL Australia) that was bound for Iran with weapons from North Korea suspected as intended for Hezbollah, Hamas, or Quds Force. The weapons, including components for rockets, were hidden in ten containers that left North Korea and were transferred to a PRC ship that sailed from China's port city of Dalian to Shanghai, where they were transferred to the ANL Australia. This or other cargo included PRC-made parts for the 122mm Grad rockets fired by Hamas and Hezbollah into Israel. Possibly related, a U.S. destroyer followed an Iranian ship from Dalian to Iran's port of Bandar Abbas in October 2009.148
George Tenet, At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA (Harper Collins Publishers, 2007).
CRS Report RL30946, China-U.S. Aircraft Collision Incident of April 2001: Assessments and Policy Implications, by [author name scrubbed] et al., available upon request; CRS Report RL30957, Taiwan: Major U.S. Arms Sales Since 1990, by [author name scrubbed].
Senate Foreign Relations Committee, hearing, Fiscal Year 2003 Foreign Affairs Budget, February 5, 2002.
First reported by Dan Balz, Bob Woodward, and Jeff Himmelman, "Thursday, September 13," Washington Post, January 29, 2002; and confirmed in the 9/11 Commission's report, Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, July 22, 2004.
Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, hearing, Worldwide Threats: Converging Dangers in a Post-9/11 World, February 6, 2002.
White House, "U.S., China Stand Against Terrorism," Shanghai, China, October 19, 2001.
White House, "President Bush, Chinese President Jiang Zemin Discuss Iraq, N. Korea," Crawford, Texas, October 25, 2002.
Robert Zoellick, "Whither China: From Membership to Responsibility," September 21, 2005.
Department of State, press conference, Beijing, December 6, 2001.
Daniel Schearf, "U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigations Seeks Further Cooperation with China," VOA, June 13, 2007.
Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, "U.S.-East Asia Policy: Three Aspects," Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington, DC, December 11, 2002.
Author's consultation; "Chinese Spymaster Complains About News Leak," Washington Times, October 8, 2009.
Amnesty International, "Uighurs Fleeing Persecution as China Wages its 'War on Terror'," July 7, 2004; Uyghur Human Rights Project, "Persecution of Uyghurs in the Era of the 'War on Terror'," October 16, 2007.
Uyghur American Association, January 26, 2010, citing sina.com.
James Millward, Eurasian Crossroads: a History of Xinjiang, Columbia University, 2007.
PRC State Council, "'East Turkistan' Terrorist Forces Cannot Get Away with Impunity," Xinhua, January 21, 2002.
Philip Pan, "U.S. Warns of Plot by Group in W. China," Washington Post, August 29, 2002.
Quoted in "U.S. Adds East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) to Terror List," Voice of America, August 26, 2002.
Department of the Treasury, April 20, and Federal Register, April 27, 2009.
Shamim Shahid, "Baitullah Spurns Omar's Advice," The Nation, June 20, 2009.
Yuriy Yegorov, "Color Green is Needed," Nezavisimaya Gazeta, July 26, 2000.
Alisher Muradov, "East Turkestan is a Great State," Moskovskiy Komsomolets v Kyrgyzstane, September 6, 2001.
Interview with Pan Zhiping in "Three Evil Forces Threatening Xinjiang's Stability," Ta Kung Pao [PRC-owned newspaper in Hong Kong], August 10, 2001.
PRC Ministry of Foreign Affairs news conference, November 15, 2001.
"Uyghur Separatist Denies Links to Taliban," Radio Free Asia, January 27, 2002. Also, a few Uighurs had been reported as studying at a Pakistani madrassa (religious school) and joining the Taliban in fighting in Afghanistan in 1999, as well as joining the Islamic fights in Chechnya and Uzbekistan (Ahmed Rashid and Susan Lawrence, "Joining Foreign Jihad," Far Eastern Economic Review, September 7, 2000).
Turkistan Islamic Party, "Refute and Reminder of Accusations Published Around the World About Turkistan Islamic Party," November 24, 2003.
"Eastern Turkistan Terrorist Groups, Individuals Identified," Xinhua, December 15, 2003.
Al-Hayah, October 17, 2003; AFP, December 23, 2003; Xinhua, December 24, 2003.
Turkistan Islamic Party, "Islam Tiger Hesen Mexsum (1964-2003)," December 31, 2003.
David Cloud and Ian Johnson, "In Post-9/11 World, Chinese Dissidents Pose U.S. Dilemma," Wall Street Journal, August 3, 2004.
Al-Qa'ida in Afghanistan, "Martyrs in Time of Alienation," January 31, 2008.
"Separatist Leader Vows to Target the Chinese Government; Uyghur Leader Denies Terror Charges," Radio Free Asia, January 29, 2003.
Zhongguo Guoqing Guoli, April 28, 1998.
Ta Kung Pao, March 13, 1998; Zhongguo Xinwen She, March 6, 1999; South China Morning Post, May 15, 1998.
AFP, February 26 and March 5, 1997; Reuters, March 5, 1997; Xinhua, May 29, 1997.
There are conflicting reasons for the protest and paramilitary crackdown in Yining that occurred on February 5-6, 1997, as reported by the Washington Post, February 11 and 23, 1997; Washington Times, February 12, 1997; International Taklamakan Uighur Human Rights Association, February 15, 1997; Far Eastern Economic Review, February 27, 1997; AERA, May 26, 1997; and Amnesty International, "Gross Violations of Human Rights in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region," April 21, 1999, and "China: Remember the Gulja Massacre," February 1, 2007. Mass sentencing and execution rallies were reported afterwards. AFP reported on February 12, 1997, that about 100 Uighurs were executed. On April 24, 1997, a court held a rally with over 5,000 people to sentence 30 alleged offenders in the incident, sentencing three Uighurs to death, according to PRC official media. Reuters reported that when about 100 people rushed to rescue the 30 prisoners, People's Armed Police opened fire, killing two and wounding five. Again, on July 23, 1997, PRC media in Urumqi reported that a court sentenced 29 "terrorists and criminals" at a rally with over 4,000 people. The sentences included nine death sentences.
James Kelly, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, "U.S.-East Asia Policy: Three Aspects," Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington, December 11, 2002; Lorne Craner, Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, "The War Against Terrorism and Human Rights," speech in Urumqi, December 19, 2002.
U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit, Jamal Kiyemba v. Barack Obama, February 18, 2009.
Videos dated December 23, 2006; March 11, 2007; April 22, 2008; September 8, 2008; February 22, 2009.
When Kadeer was arrested, she simply was going to meet one CRS analyst in Urumqi.
Dennis Halpin and Hans Hogrefe, "Findings of Staff Delegation Visit to Urumqi, PRC, May 30-June 2, 2006," Memorandum to Chairman Henry Hyde and Ranking Member Tom Lantos, October 30, 2006.
White House, "President Bush Visits Prague, Czech Republic, Discusses Freedom," June 5, 2007. Also: Rebiya Kadeer, "My Chinese Jailers," Wall Street Journal, May 30, 2007.
White House, "President Bush Honors the 10th Anniversary of the International Religious Freedom Act," July 14, 2008, and "Statement by the Press Secretary on President Bush's Meeting with Chinese Freedom Activists," July 29, 2008; Uyghur American Association, "Rebiya Kadeer Meets with President Bush at the White House," July 30, 2008.
Radio Free Asia, June 29, July 5, 2009.
Washington Post, July 8, 2009; Financial Times, July 19, 2009; Associated Press, July 29, 2009, and June 21, 2010.
South China Morning Post, Hong Kong, and Telegraph, London, July 14, 2009; AP, January 18, 2010.
Norway announced the arrests on July 8, 2010. The Associated Press released its report on hold until the arrests: "Officials: Al-Qaida Plotted Bombings in Europe, U.S.," July 8, 2010. Also, New York Times, July 8, 2010.
"Revealed: The Plot to Blow Up DragonMart," The National, July 8, 2010.
Amnesty International, appeal, May 25, 2004; John Mintz, "Group Says Chinese Saw Detainees," Washington Post, May 26, 2004. The Washington Post also reported that foreign intelligence agents visited Guantanamo to help question citizens from their countries.
"Group Says Chinese Saw Detainees," Washington Post, May 26, 2004; Amnesty International, "China: Fleeing Uighurs Forced Back to "Anti-Terror" Torture and Execution," July 7, 2004.
Robin Wright, "Chinese Detainees are Men Without a Country," Washington Post, August 24, 2005; and Asian Wall Street Journal, August 25, 2005.
Guy Dinmore and James Kynge, "China Torture Fears Curb Guantanamo Releases," Financial Times, June 23, 2004; and David Cloud and Ian Johnson, "In Post-9/11 World, Chinese Dissidents Pose U.S. Dilemma," Wall Street Journal, August 3, 2004.
Secretary Colin Powell, "Roundtable with Japanese Journalists," August 12, 2004; and Testimony of Randall Schriver at a hearing of House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight, June 16, 2009.
Demetri Sevastopulo, "U.S. Fails to Find Countries to Take Uighurs," Financial Times, October 28, 2004; "Uighurs Face Return to China from Guantanamo," Financial Times, March 16, 2005; "Detention Dilemma," Washington Post (editorial), May 3, 2005; Josh White and Robin Wright, "Detainee Cleared for Release is in Limbo at Guantanamo," Washington Post, December 15, 2005; Neil Lewis, "Freed From Guantanamo but Stranded Far From Home," New York Times, August 15, 2006; Josh White, "Lawyers Demand Release of Chinese Muslims," Washington Post, December 5, 2006.
Tim Golden, "Chinese Leave Guantanamo for Albanian Limbo," New York Times, June 10, 2007; Jonathan Finer, "After Guantanamo, An Empty Freedom," Washington Post, October 17, 2007.
"Sweden Grants Asylum to Former Guantanamo Detainee," Associated Press, February 18, 2009; "Guantanamo Story," Spiegel Online, April 17, 2009; Ritt Goldstein, "Swedish Court Secures Ex-Guantanamo Uighur's Asylum Quest," Christian Science Monitor, April 30, 2009.
R. Jeffrey Smith and Julie Tate, "Uighurs' Detention Conditions Condemned," Washington Post, January 30, 2007; Sabin Willett (lawyer for a detainee, Huzaifa Parhat), testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight, May 20, 2008.
House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight, hearing on the FBI's role at Guantanamo Bay prison, June 4, 2008.
Bill Delahunt and Dana Rohrabacher, letter to Robert Gates, June 19, 2008.
Eric Edelman, letter to Bill Delahunt and Dana Rohrabacher, July 30, 2008.
Lindsey Graham, "A Dangerous Precedent," USA Today, October 14, 2008.
Bill Delahunt, letter to President Barack Obama, January 26, 2009.
Defense Department, "Review of Department Compliance With President's Executive Order on Detainee Conditions of Confinement," issued February 23, 2009.
Senate Appropriations Committee, Hearing on Proposed Budget Estimates for the Fiscal 2009 War Supplemental, April 30, 2009.
Mitch McConnell, "Releasing Guantanamo Detainees Into the U.S. Will Not Make America Safer," April 24, 2009.
Frank Wolf, letter to President Barack Obama, May 1, 2009; "Floor Statement of Rep. Frank Wolf on Potential Release of Uyghurs Held at Guantanamo Bay into the United States," May 4, 2009.
House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight, "The Uighurs: a History of Persecution," "Exploring the Nature of Uighur Nationalism: Freedom Fighters or Terrorists?", "Chinese Interrogation vs. Congressional Oversight: the Uighurs at Guantanamo," June 10, June 16, and July 16, 2009.
U.S. Supreme Court, Boumediene v. Bush, June 12, 2008; and U.S. Court of Appeals, Huzaifa Parhat v. Robert Gates, decided June 20, 2008.
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Notice of Status, September 30, 2008.
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, "Petitioners' Supplemental Memorandum in Response to Government's Notice of Status," October 1, 2008.
Statements quoted by Del Quentin Wilber, "Uighur Detainees May be Released to U.S.," Washington Post, October 5, 2008; and William Glaberson, "Judge Orders 17 Detainees at Guantanamo Freed," New York Times, October 8, 2008.
William Glaberson, "Release of 17 Guantanamo Detainees Sputters As Officials Debate the Risk," New York Times, October 16, 2008.
U.S. Court of Appeals (DC Circuit), Jamal Kiyemba, Next Friend, et al. v. George W. Bush, October 20, 2008.
"Uighurs Said They Left China to Escape Repression, Find Work," Associated Press, October 9, 2008.
Marisa Taylor, "Appeals Court Blocks Release of Guantanamo Detainees," McClatchy News, October 8, 2008; Justice Department, Brief for Appellants, Jamal Kiyemba v. George W. Bush, October 24, 2008; Carol Rosenberg, "Obama Panel Interviews Muslims from China at Guantanamo," Miami Herald, March 31, 2009.
U.S. Court of Appeals (D.C. Circuit), Jamal Kiyemba, Next Friend, et al. v. Barack Obama, et al., February 18, 2009.
Charles Hutzler, "China Gathering Intelligence on Activists It Thinks Might Disrupt 2008 Olympics," Associated Press, July 23, 2007.
Siobhan Gorman, "U.S. Fears Threat of Cyberspying at Olympics," Wall Street Journal, July 17, 2008.
White House, Press Briefing by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on the President's Visit to China, Beijing, November 20, 2005.
President George Bush, press conference, February 28, 2008.
Such assistance included an anti-terrorism exercise held by the European Command in March 2004; exercise scenarios created by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency to defend against weapons of mass destruction; imagery collected by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency; and defensive barriers and facilities set up by deployed U.S. naval forces. See GAO, "Olympic Security: U.S. Support to Athens Games Provides Lessons for Future Olympics," May 2005.
Xinhua, April 27, 2008.
Martin Wayne, "Al Qaeda's China Problem," PacNet 8A, Pacific Forum CSIS, February 23, 2007. Martin Wayne later wrote in his book, China's War on Terrorism (Routledge, 2008), that a real threat of insurgency exists.
Daniel Schearf, "U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigations Seeks Further Cooperation with China," VOA News, June 13, 2007.
State Department, "Country Reports on Terrorism," annual reports; and National Counterterrorism Center, "2007 Report on Terrorism," April 30, 2008.
Xinhua and Huanqiu Shibao, February 18, 2008; China Daily, February 19, 2008; "Terrorist Attack Prevented for Olympics: Official," Xinhua, March 9, 2008.
Dan Martin, "Residents Dispute PRC Official Account of Raid on Xinjiang Terrorists in January," AFP, April 8, 2008.
Xinjiang Communist Party Secretary Wang Lequan quoted by Zhongguo Tongxun She, March 20, 2008; and Praveen Swami, "China's Mid-Air Terror Trail Leads to Pakistan," Hindu, March 22, 2008.
Radio Free Asia, April 1, 2008; AFP, April 2, 2008.
AFP, June 6, 2008; Reuters, June 16 and 17, 2008; AFP, June 19, 2008.
Xinhua, July 29, 2008; AFP, July 31, 2008.
Xinhua, July 2, 7, 17, and September 1, 2008; South China Morning Post, July 3, 8, 2008.
Uyghur American Association, "Five Uyghurs Killed in Raid in Urumchi; Uyghurs Executed in Kashgar After Mass Sentencing Rally," July 10, 2008.
Uyghur American Association, "Rebiya Kadeer Expresses Her Wish for a Peaceful Beijing Olympics and Urges Beijing to Cease its Harsh Repression of Uyghurs," July 18, 2008.
Xinhua, July 26, 2008; Zhongguo Xinwen She, July 28, 2008.
Xinhua, AFP, August 4, 2008; Kyodo, Xinhua, August 5, 2008.
AFP, August 5, 2008; New York Times, September 29, 2008 (also published pictures).
National Counterterrorism Center, "2008 Report on Terrorism," April 30, 2009 (unclassified).
AFP, August 13, 2008.
Ming Pao, August 23, 2008; South China Morning Post, August 25, 2008; Xinhua, May 27, 2009.
On the Taliban resurgence, see Ahmed Rashid, "A Taliban Comeback?", YaleGlobal, May 23, 2006; and CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy, by [author name scrubbed].
Matt Forney, "Uighur Fire," Far Eastern Economic Review, February 27, 1997.
"Turkestan Miscreants Trying to Harm Ties, Says China," Dawn, April 19, 2008.
Daily Times (Lahore) and PRC Foreign Ministry news conference, August 20, 2008.
Independent (London), April 8, 2009. On April 9, PRC official media, Zhongguo Tongxun She cited this article as reporting that China asked Pakistan to crack down on ETIM. Geo TV (Karachi), April 27, 2009.
Wall Street Journal, July 26; London Paper, August 13; AFP, August 22, 2008.
"China Identifies Alleged 'Eastern Turkistan' Terrorists," Xinhua, October 21, 2008; and "TIP Bayanati," dated October 23 and posted on October 24, 2008, translated by OSC.
Maureen Fan, "An Ancient Culture, Bulldozed Away," Washington Post, March 24, 2009.
Xinhua, April 9, 2009.
Kathrin Hille, "China Tries to Lift Uighur Language Barrier," Financial Times, July 4, 2010.
Xinhua, September 1, 2009.
China's official Xinhua news agency, May 10, 2005.
Congressional-Executive Commission on China, hearing on the Impact of the 2008 Olympic Games on Human Rights and Rule of Law in China, February 27, 2008.
Bill Gertz, "China Gets U.S. Olympics Help," Washington Times, June 5, 2008; Daniel Pepper, "High-noise Device for Olympics Reviewed," Washington Times, June 6, 2008. Also, Bill Gertz, "U.S. Nuke Spotters Sent to China Before Games," Washington Times, June 20, 2008.
Frank Wolf, letter to President Obama and floor statement, July 13, 2009; Spiegel, November 24, 2009; New York Times, January 9, 2010; AFP, March 8, 2010; Robert Gates, speech at Shangri-la Dialogue, Singapore, June 5, 2010.
See CRS Report RL31555, China and Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction and Missiles: Policy Issues, by [author name scrubbed].
Interviews with CSI teams in Shanghai and Hong Kong; CRS memo, "Congressional Staff Delegation's Visit to China, Hong Kong (August 2005)," September 14, 2005, by Shirley Kan.
Also see CRS Report RL32496, U.S.-China Military Contacts: Issues for Congress, by [author name scrubbed].
Senator Bob Smith and Representative Dana Rohrabacher, letter to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, December 17, 2001.
Rand, "U.S.-China Security Management: Assessing the Military-to-Military Relationship," July 2004.
Renmin Ribao [People's Daily], June 15, 2007; AKI Press, July 10, 2007.
The deployment of the PLA was reported in the Wall Street Journal, July 8, and Financial Times, July 19, 2009.
Feng Huang Wei Shih Tzu Hsun Tai, July 24; Krasnaya Zvezda, July 25; Huanqiu Shibao, December 14, 2009; Huanqiu Shibao, June 29, 2010.
"China to Offer $15m for Afghan Reconstruction," Xinhua, April 1, 2004.
"China Vows to Continue Support to Afghanistan's Reconstruction," Xinhua, January 26, 2010.
Joshua Partlow, "Afghan Minister Accused of Taking Bribe," Washington Post, November 18, 2009.
Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, "press roundtable," Beijing, May 4, 2010; Deputy Secretary of State, "U.S.-China Cooperation on Global Issues," Washington, May 11, 2010.
Foreign Press Center Briefing, General Tommy Franks, Commander, U.S. Central Command, Washington, April 11, 2002; Press Roundtable with Adm. Dennis Blair, Commander, U.S. Pacific Command, Hong Kong, April 18, 2002.
Department of Defense, "Fact Sheet: International Contributions to the War Against Terrorism," June 14, 2002.
Wall Street Journal, August 10; AP, September 15; China Daily, November 10; Washington Post, November 18; New York Times, December 30, 2009; Kabul Radio, January 1, 2010.
Joby Warrick and Karen DeYoung, "CIA Helped India, Pakistan Share Secrets in Probe of Mumbai Siege," Washington Post, February 16, 2009.
Xinhua, February 24, 2009.
New York Times, April 5, 2010.
"Thinning the Lines on the Line of Control," Wall Street Journal, April 30, 2010.
New York Times, July 19, 2006; Jane's Defense Weekly, July 26, 2006; USA Today, August 18, 2006.
Bill Gertz and Rowan Scarborough, "Inside the Ring: China-al Qaeda Nexus," Washington Times, December 21, 2001; Bill Gertz, "China-made Artillery Seized in Afghanistan," Washington Times, April 12, 2002; "China-trained Taliban," Washington Times, June 21, 2002; Scott Baldauf, "Al Qaeda Massing for New Fight" and "How Al Qaeda Seeks to Buy Chinese Arms," Christian Science Monitor, August 9 and 23, 2002; Jane's Land-based Air Defence 2003-2004; Philip Smucker, "Taliban Uses Weapons Made in China, Iran," Washington Times, June 5, 2007; "Chinese Arms in the Hands of Taleban," editorial, Kabul Times, June 7, 2007; Bill Gertz, "China Arming Terrorists," Washington Times, June 15, 2007; Demetri Sevastopuloin, "U.S. Takes China to Task Over Iraq and Afghan Arms," Financial Times, July 9, 2007; Jane's Armor and Artillery 2007-2008.
Jane's Land-Based Air Defence, 1996-1997, and 2003-2004.
Briefing by Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and General Myers, August 9, 2002.
Tolu Television, Kabul, September 4, 2007.
Pajhwok Afghan News, Kabul, September 6, 2007; AFP, September 22, 2007.
"Iran Arming Taliban, U.S. Claims," CNN, June 13, 2007; Richard Lawless, transcript of interview with Asahi Shimbum and other newspapers, July 6, 2007; Demetri Sevastopuloin, "U.S. Takes China to Task Over Iraq and Afghan Arms," Financial Times, July 9, 2007; Jim Wolf, "U.S. Faults China on Shipments to Iran," Reuters, July 12, 2007; John Negroponte, Press Roundtable in Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan, September 11, 2007.
Paul Danahar, "Taleban Getting Chinese Weapons," BBC News, September 3, 2007.
PRC Foreign Ministry news conferences, July 10; July 26; September 4, 2007.
"Nations Closer to Deal on Iran Sanctions," AP, March 13, 2007; and Colum Lynch, "6 Powers Agree on Sanctions for Iran," Washington Post, March 16, 2007.
Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, hearing on the DNI's annual threat assessment, testimony of J. Michael McConnell, February 5, 2008.
House Armed Services Committee, hearing on recent security developments in China, prepared joint statement of James Shinn, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs, and Major General Phillip Breedlove, USAF, Vice Director for Strategic Plans and Policy, Joint Chiefs of Staff, June 25, 2008.
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, "Military Power of the People's Republic of China, 2009," March 25, 2009.
Washington Post, December 3, 2009; KUNA, December 22, 2009.