US embassy cable - 01RANGOON1171

CHINESE QUIETLY SUPPORT REFORM?

Identifier: 01RANGOON1171
Wikileaks: View 01RANGOON1171 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Rangoon
Created: 2001-07-27 11:03:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PREL PHUM PGOV CH PHUM PGOV CH BM BM PREL
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 RANGOON 001171 
 
SIPDIS 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 02        RANGOO  01171  01 OF 02  282145Z 
CINCPAC FOR AMBASSADOR TWINING 
USUN FOR PIPER CAMPBELL 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL:  07/26/11 
TAGS: PREL, PHUM, PGOV, CH, PHUM, PGOV, CH, BM, BM PREL 
SUBJECT: CHINESE QUIETLY SUPPORT REFORM? 
 
REF: A) RANGOON 00617  B) KUALA LUMPUR 01573 
 
CLASSIFIED BY CHARGE D'AFFAIRES PRISCILLA A. CLAPP, 
REASON:  1.5(D) 
 
1.  (C)  SUMMARY.  THE CHINESE DCM TOLD US THE PRC 
CONTINUES TO SUPPORT THE ONGOING POLITICAL DIALOGUE, 
AND BELIEVES THE MILITARY REGIME IS SINCERE IN ITS 
DEALINGS WITH AUNG SAN SUU KYI (ASSK).  WHILE HE 
STATED HIS BELIEF THAT OUTSIDE PRESSURE IS COUNTER- 
PRODUCTIVE, HE GAVE SOME REASON TO BELIEVE BEIJING 
MIGHT PROVIDE DISCREET SUPPORT FOR RAZALI'S 
INITIATIVE.  END SUMMARY. 
 
THE DIALOGUE 
------------ 
 
2.  (C)  CHINESE DCM TANG YING TOLD DCM ON 26 JULY 
THAT CHINA CLOSELY FOLLOWS POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS IN 
BURMA AND HAS BEEN CONCERNED FOR SOME TIME ABOUT 
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC STABILITY IN THIS COUNTRY (REF 
A).  ACCORDING TO TANG, THE PRC SEES BURMA'S 
FUNDAMENTAL PROBLEM AS POLITICAL. 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 03        RANGOO  01171  01 OF 02  282145Z 
3.  (C)  TANG NOTED THAT BEIJING WELCOMES THE 
DIALOGUE BETWEEN ASSK AND THE RULING STATE PEACE AND 
DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (SPDC) AND HOPES THAT IT WILL, 
OVER TIME, LEAD TO A MORE STABLE POLITICAL 
ENVIRONMENT WHICH WILL PERMIT BURMA TO DEVELOP MORE 
RAPIDLY ECONOMICALLY.  HIS GOVERNMENT WAS PLEASED TO 
SEE THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS AND REOPENING 
OF A HANDFUL OF NATIONAL LEAGUE FOR DEMOCRACY (NLD) 
LOCAL OFFICES. 
 
4.  (C)  TANG BELIEVES THAT THE SENIOR SPDC 
LEADERSHIP IS QUITE SERIOUS AND SINCERE ABOUT TRYING 
TO REACH AN AGREEMENT WITH THE NLD THAT WOULD RESOLVE 
THE POLITICAL IMPASSE.  HE BELIEVES THE SPDC IS 
TAKING A LARGE RISK IN ENGAGING IN TALKS, BOTH 
BECAUSE IT MAY CAUSE DISSENTION WITHIN THE MILITARY 
ABOUT HOW TO PROCEED, AND BECAUSE IT RISKS FURTHER 
PRESSURE AND CONDEMNATION FROM THE INTERNATIONAL 
COMMUNITY IF THE TALKS FAIL. 
 
5.  (C)  TANG ASSERTED THAT THE RESOLUTION OF BURMA'S 
POLITICAL PROBLEMS IS PRIMARILY A DOMESTIC ISSUE, 
WHICH MUST BE RESOLVED BY THE VARIOUS BURMESE 
PARTIES.  HE STRESSED THAT FROM BEIJING'S 
PERSPECTIVE, OUTSIDE PRESSURE OR INTERFERENCE COULD 
IN FACT COMPLICATE BURMESE RESOLUTION OF THE 
POLITICAL STALEMATE IN THE COUNTRY.  HE SUGGESTED 
THAT THE BEST THING THE USG COULD DO AT THIS STAGE 
WAS TO PUBLICLY SUPPORT THE PROCESS.  HE BELIEVED 
THIS WAS THE BEST WAY TO ENCOURAGE THE SPDC TO TAKE 
FURTHER STEPS. 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 04        RANGOO  01171  01 OF 02  282145Z 
 
6.  (C)  TANG NOTED THAT CHINA WAS INTERESTED IN THE 
RAZALI PROCESS, BUT DID NOT OFFER A STRONG STATEMENT 
OF SUPPORT FOR IT, EVEN AFTER OUR BEING TOLD OF THE 
IMPORTANCE THE USG ATTACHES TO THIS INITIATIVE.  HE 
DID SAY THAT THE CHINESE AMBASSADOR HAD TRIED TO 
ATTEND RAZALI'S BRIEFING DURING HIS JUNE VISIT, BUT 
MISSED IT WHEN HE DID NOT RECEIVE WORD ON THE CHANGED 
TIME AND LOCATION OF THE BRIEFING. 
 
RECENT CHINESE OFFICIAL VISITS 
------------------------------ 
 
7.  (C)  TANG EXPLAINED THAT THE RECENT TRAVEL OF 
YUNNAN PROVINCIAL VICE GOVERNOR SHAO QIWEI TO BURMA 
WAS TO INSPECT THE PAUNGLAUNG HYDROPOWER PLANT.  TANG 
DECLINED TO ESTIMATE WHEN THIS PLANT (WHICH IS BEHIND 
SCHEDULE) MIGHT BE PUT INTO SERVICE.  HE NOTED THAT 
THE RECENT VISIT OF THE MINISTER FOR RURAL PLANNING 
AND LAND USE HAD RESULTED IN AN MOU TO COOPERATE IN 
MINING.  TANG SAID THERE WERE A NUMBER OF SPECIFIC 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ3939 
 
PAGE 01        RANGOO  01171  02 OF 02  282146Z 
ACTION EAP-00 
 
INFO  LOG-00   AID-00   CIAE-00  DODE-00  SRPP-00  EB-00    EUR-00 
      VC-00    H-01     TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    L-00     AC-01 
      NSAE-00  NSCE-00  OIC-02   OMB-01   PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00 
      ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    SS-00    STR-00   TRSE-00  T-00 
      USIE-00  PMB-00   PRM-01   DRL-02   G-00     SAS-00     /008W 
                  ------------------0B3FDC  282146Z /69 
R 271103Z JUL 01 
FM AMEMBASSY RANGOON 
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 6637 
INFO ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS 
AMEMBASSY BEIJING 
AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 
AMEMBASSY DHAKA 
AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI 
AMEMBASSY OSLO 
AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 
AMEMBASSY SEOUL 
AMEMBASSY TOKYO 
AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 
AMCONSUL CHIANG MAI 
USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI//FPA 
USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 
USMISSION GENEVA 
ALL EUROPEAN UNION POST COLLECTIVE 
 
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 RANGOON 001171 
 
SIPDIS 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 02        RANGOO  01171  02 OF 02  282146Z 
CINCPAC FOR AMBASSADOR TWINING 
USUN FOR PIPER CAMPBELL 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL:  07/26/11 
TAGS:  PREL, PHUM, PGOV, CH, BM 
SUBJECT: CHINESE QUIETLY SUPPORT REFORM? 
 
PROJECTS IN THIS AREA, BUT COULD PROVIDE NO DETAILS. 
 
8.  (C)  REGARDING THE PLANNED KUNMING ANTI-NARCOTICS 
SUMMIT INVOLVING CHINA, BURMA, LAOS, AND THAILAND, 
TANG SAID PREPARATIONS ARE PROCEEDING.  WHILE NOT YET 
SCHEDULED, THERE WILL BE A SENIOR OFFICIALS MEETING, 
FOLLOWED BY A MINISTERIAL, AND THEN THE ACTUAL 
MEETING INVOLVING HEADS OF GOVERNMENT. 
 
9.  (C)  COMMENT:  AS NOTED IN REF B, RAZALI MAY BE 
INTERESTED IN PURSUING CHINESE SUPPORT FOR HIS 
INITIATIVE.  OUR DISCUSSIONS WITH TANG LEAD US TO 
BELIEVE THAT, WHILE THERE WILL BE DISTINCT LIMITS TO 
CHINESE WILLINGNESS TO PUSH FOR CHANGE PUBLICLY, THE 
CHINESE EMBASSY HERE MAY BE WILLING TO QUIETLY 
SUPPORT THE PROCESS.  TANG HAS TOLD US PREVIOUSLY 
THAT HE AND OTHER EMBASSY OFFICERS HAVE ADVOCATED FOR 
BASIC REFORM IN INFORMAL CONTACTS WITH BURMESE 
COUNTERPARTS.  AS A MAJOR SUPPORTER OF THE SPDC, 
CHINESE VIEWS, HOWEVER DISCREETLY THEY MAY BE 
TRANSMITTED, ARE LIKELY TO HAVE AN IMPACT.  FROM THE 
CHINESE STANDPOINT, A MORE STABLE AND ECONOMICALLY 
VIBRANT BURMA WOULD MAKE A BETTER NEIGHBOR. 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
PAGE 03        RANGOO  01171  02 OF 02  282146Z 
CLAPP 
 
                       CONFIDENTIAL 
 
> 
 
      2001RANGOO01171 - CONFIDENTIAL 

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