» 03/04/2010, 00.00
China’s defence spending rising "only" 7.5 per cent
Chinese military expenditures are second only to those of the United States, twice higher than India’s. Many experts believe that the actual defence budget is much higher. National People’s Congress spokesman criticises Obama for meeting the Dalai Lama and world leaders for using Taiwan to interfere in China’s internal affairs. He claims ‘solidarity and harmony” reign in Xinjiang.
United Kingdom and Portugal back lifting China arms embargo
UK Foreign Minister says end to embargo is near. But both London and Lisbon demand progress in human rights. China sees embargo as litmus test on its Tibet and Taiwan policy.
22/12/2010 INDIA – RUSSIA
Russia and India agree to US$ 35 billion contract for 300 fighter jets
Moscow and New Delhi plan to develop and build fifth generation fighter planes. Russian President Medvedev is in India to renew old ties. He backs India’s aspiration for a permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council. The two partners plan to double trade over the next five years.
22/04/2010 IRAN – UNITED STATES – CHINA
Beijing trying to “water down” sanctions against Tehran
China has proposed amendments to US-drafted sanctions. The mainland is Iran’s biggest trading partner, and depends on its energy supplies. The United States does not exclude the military option. Turkey offers to mediate.
China not competing with the United States in arms and energy
Beijing says it seeks cooperation with Washington claiming shared interests and problems, but it expects a gradual end of US support to Taiwan.
China's National People's Congress and its billionaire Communists to meet shortly
The mainland's second-richest man, Zong Qinghou, worth more than US 10 billion, and the country's richest woman, Wu Yajun, with almost US$ 7 billion in personal assets, are among the delegates. By comparison, China's average annual income is around US$ 2,400. The NPC adopts laws against pollution and land grabs but fails to implement them or bring to justice those of its members that break the law. Faced with growing social unrest, outgoing PM Wen Jiabao has called for political reforms. Instead, the answer so far has been tighter controls and more money for the military.
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