US embassy cable - 06TIRANA467

FM MUSTAFAJ ON MEETING WITH CHINESE AMBASSADOR ON UIGHURS

Identifier: 06TIRANA467
Wikileaks: View 06TIRANA467 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Tirana
Created: 2006-05-09 02:59:00
Classification: SECRET
Tags: PREF PTER PHUM PREL PINR AL CH
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
VZCZCXYZ0000
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTI #0467/01 1290259
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
O 090259Z MAY 06
FM AMEMBASSY TIRANA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4234
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING IMMEDIATE 0072
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1126
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 1185
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 1076
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA 0059
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 0269
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 5255
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0891
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0684
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 3256
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUFNPKB/COMUSNAVEUR NAPLES IT
RUFNPKB/COMUSNAVEUR POLAD NAPLES IT
S E C R E T TIRANA 000467 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR EUR/SCE (BENEDICT, SAINZ, ENGLISH), S/WCI 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/08/2021 
TAGS: PREF, PTER, PHUM, PREL, PINR, AL, CH 
SUBJECT: FM MUSTAFAJ ON MEETING WITH CHINESE AMBASSADOR ON 
UIGHURS 
 
REF: A. BEIJING 8334 
 
     B. TIRANA 461 
 
Classified By: Ambassador Marcie B. Ries, reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
1. (U) Ambassador met with Albanian Foreign Minister Besnik 
Mustafaj on the afternoon of May 8, following Mustafaj's 
meeting with Chinese Ambassador Tian Changchun and the 
release of a statement by Tian to News24, an Albanian 
television news channel. 
 
2. (S) Mustafaj said Tian was "very tough" in their meeting. 
According to Mustafaj, Tian first chastised him for not 
informing China about the Uighurs, noting the U.S. had fully 
informed the Chinese government after their arrival in 
Albania.  Tian noted the Chinese were aware of a "secret 
agreement" between the Albanian Minister of Interior and the 
U.S.  (Note: We assume Tian was referring to the Minister of 
Interior's written statement promising that the Uighurs would 
not be sent back against their will.  End Note.)  Mustafaj 
responded that Albania would in any case act in accordance 
with its international obligations. 
 
3. (S) According to Mustafaj, Tian said the Uighurs were 
terrorists and that the GoA's acceptance of them would affect 
relations with China.  Mustafaj said he rejected this 
argument, calling this an issue between China and the U.S., 
not between China and Albania.  He said the GoA was aware 
that the Uighurs had been detained at Guantanamo Bay but had 
no information on the details of the circumstances. 
 
4. (S) Mustafaj added that, with regard to the Uighurs' 
asylum applications, Albanian authorities would proceed 
according to Albanian laws and regulations and inform the 
Chinese government of the outcome.  When Tian argued that the 
"East Turkistan" movement sought to divide China, Mustafaj 
noted that the Uighurs had been accepted into Albania on an 
individual basis, not as an organization or movement, adding 
that the GoA acknowledged China's territorial integrity and 
had no knowledge of the Uighurs' seeking the territorial 
division of China.  Tian expressed the hope that Albania 
would return the Uighurs to China; perhaps this could be a 
"gift" of the GoA to China.  Mustafaj replied that he hoped 
to give China a more valuable gift than "terrorists." 
 
5. (U) The MFA released on its website a statement on 
Mustafaj's meeting with Tian: 
 
BEGIN MFA STATEMENT 
 
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Besnik Mustafaj, 
received today in a meeting the Ambassador of the People's 
Republic of China in Tirana, Mr. Tian Changchun, upon the 
request of the latter.  The Chinese Ambassador presented to 
Minister Mustafaj the verbal request for the extradition of 
five Chinese citiZens, who entered on May 5, 2006, the 
Albanian border check-point at Rinas Airport, where they 
sought political asylum.  According to the Chinese 
Ambassador, these five Chinese citizens are members of the 
"Eastern Turkistan" organization. 
 
Minister Mustafaj informed the Chinese Ambassador about the 
arrival details of these persons at Rinas Airport.  He 
assured the Chinese Ambassador that the relevant competent 
authorities of Albania will investigate seriously on their 
previous activities. 
 
In addition, Minister Mustafaj guaranteed the Ambassador 
Changchun (sic) that the Albanian state is fully committed to 
deal with this issue in accordance with the Albanian 
legislation and international conventions where Albania is a 
 
state party.  The policy of the Republic of Albania is based 
on its well-known position made public that it recognizes one 
China only, and this position is unalterable.  Upon this 
position are based all the close relations existing between 
our two countries. 
 
END MFA STATEMENT 
 
6. (U) The translated text of Tian's statement, which was 
sent by fax to News24 (an all-news TV channel), follows: 
 
BEGIN CHINESE STATEMENT 
 
The five defendant Chinese citizens, detained at Guantanamo 
for terrorism, who were accepted by the Albanian Government 
in recent days, are in no way refugees, but members of the 
terrorist organization "Eastern Turkistan."  These defendants 
supported the Taliban in the Afghan war, which clarifies the 
issue in question very well. 
 
The terrorist group "Eastern Turkistan" is closely related to 
the Al-Qaeda organization and the Taliban and is also a 
member of international terrorist forces.  Their respective 
organizations were listed in the sanctions list of Resolution 
1267 of the UNSC.  According to international law, the 
above-mentioned defendants should be returned to China. 
 
We contacted Albanian authorities today and hope that Albania 
will return to China as soon as possible the five terrorists 
of Chinese citizenship mentioned above. 
 
END CHINESE STATEMENT 

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