The detailed implementing regulations for the Counterespionage Law were issued in Chinese on 6 December. Below is a rush translation which I will update ASAP with any corrections that seem necessary.
Foreigners visiting and living in China and foreign companies doing business there should pay special attention to these parts:
Articles 6 and 7, noting that these regulations apply to persons in China and abroad. This may indicate an ambition to apply the Counterespionage Act to activities overseas.
Article 8, “Behaviors endangering state security other than espionage,” including “Fabricating or distorting facts, publishing or disseminating words or information that endanger state security, or making, distributing or publishing audio-visual products or other publications endangering state security.” Does this mean that the Act could apply to people overseas who write about China in ways that run counter to official views?
Articles 9 and 24, which apply to foreigners in the PRC and may be used to restrict entry and exit.
Article 22, which mandates cooperation with the State Security organs by citizens and organizations.
It is interesting that state security and public security authorities are referred to as “organs” (jigou) rather than by their formal names as ministries (i.e.: The Ministry of State Security and the Ministry of Public Security). This is speculation, but it could indicate that the regulations were written with a future reorganization in mind.
Xinhua News Agency, Beijing, December 6
People’s Republic of China Counterespionage Law Implementation Regulations
Chapter I. General Provisions
Article 1. The present Implementing Regulations shall be formulated in accordance with the “Counterespionage Law of the People’s Republic of China” (hereinafter referred to as the “Counterespionage Act”).
Article 2. The State Security organ is responsible for the implementation of these detailed regulations.
Other relevant departments such as Public Security and confidential administrative departments and relevant departments of the armed forces shall, in accordance with their duties and responsibilities, work closely with each other to strengthen coordination and do a good job in accordance with the law.
Article 3. “Offshore institutions and organizations” as mentioned in the “Counterespionage Act” include branches and representative offices and branches organized by overseas institutions and organizations within the territory of the People’s Republic of China. The term “foreign individuals” includes individuals residing in the territory of the People’s Republic of China People who are not PRC nationals.
Article 4. Under the “Counterespionage Act,” alleged “agents of espionage organizations,” refers to persons who are instructed, entrusted, sponsored, conducted or given instruction by any espionage organization or its members to direct others to endanger the state security activities of the People’s Republic of China.
Espionage organizations and those representing them are to be confirmed (in their identity and activities) by the responsible State Security organ under the State Council.
Article 5. Alleged “hostile organizations” as referred to under the “Counterespionage Act” refers to an organization that hostile to the regime and socialist system of the People’s Democratic Dictatorship of the People’s Republic of China that endangers state security.
Hostile organizations are confirmed by the State Security or Public Security organs under the under the State Council.
Article 6. Under the Counterespionage Act”, the term “assisting” the implementation of espionage that endangers the state security of the People’s Republic of China refers to the following acts of institutions, organizations and individuals at home and abroad:
(1) To provide funds, places and materials to the organizations and individuals that conduct espionage;
(2) To provide organizations or individuals with funds, premises and materials for the implementation of espionage.
Article 7. Under the Counterespionage Act, “collusion” refers to carrying out acts of espionage that endanger the state security of the People’s Republic of China by the following acts, (which may be) committed by organizations and individuals both at home and abroad:
(1) jointly planning or carrying out espionage activities endangering state security with overseas institutions, organizations and individuals;
(2) To receive funding or instructions from overseas institutions, organizations or individuals to carry out espionage activities that endanger state security;
(3) To establish contacts with overseas institutions, organizations and individuals and obtain support, help and conduct espionage activities that endanger state security.
Article 8. The following actions fall under Article 39 of the Counterespionage Act, “Behaviors endangering state security other than espionage”:
(1) To organize, plan and implement the plan to split the country, undermine the unification of the country, subvert state power, or overthrow the socialist system;
(2) To organize, plan and carry out terrorist activities that endanger state security;
(3) Fabricating or distorting facts, publishing or disseminating words or information that endanger state security, or making, distributing or publishing audio-visual products or other publications endangering state security;
(4) Making use of the establishment of social organizations or enterprises and institutions to carry out activities endangering state security;
(5) Using religious activities to endanger state security;
(6) Organizing and using evil cults to carry out activities endangering state security;
(7) Create ethnic disputes, incite ethnic disintegration and endanger state security;
(8) A foreign individual violating the relevant provisions by ignoring dissuasion, attending meetings without permission, personally meeting with anyone in the territory (of the PRC) who has committed a serious act of endangering state security or who is seriously suspected of endangering state security.
Chapter II: The Authority of the State Security Organs in Counterespionage Work
Article 9. If a foreigner is deemed likely to endanger the state security of the People’s Republic of China after entering its territory, the State Security organs under the State Council may decide to not allow that person to remain in the PRC for certain period of time.
Article 10. State Security organs may hunt down and arrest criminal suspects who betray the motherland and endanger the security of the State under Article 8 of these regulations of the Counterespionage Act.
Article 11. When conducting the tasks of counterespionage work according to the law, the organs of State Security shall have the right to investigate and inquire about relevant situations with relevant organizations and personnel.
Article 12. When conducting counterespionage tasks according to the law, staff members of State Security organs may inspect the belongings of suspects with unknown identities who are thought to endanger state security.
Article 13. State Security organs can configure their vehicles with special traffic signs and sirens when carrying out counterespionage tasks.
Article 14. State Security staff are not to be subjected to unlawful interference from other organizations and individuals when carrying out lawful counterespionage work.
When conducting counterespionage tasks according to law, the personnel of the State Security organs shall present official credentials or other corresponding documents.
State Security organs and their staff shall strictly act according to law in their work and shall not overstep their powers, abuse their powers, and violate the legitimate rights and interests of organizations and individuals.
Chapter III. Obligations and Rights of Citizens and Organizations in Safeguarding State Security
Article 15 Institutions, organizations and other organizations should educate their personnel on the maintenance of state security, mobilize and organize personnel in their own units to guard against and stop acts of espionage, and should accept the coordination and guidance of the state security organs.
If (State) organs, groups and other organizations fail to fulfill their obligations under the “Counterintelligence Act” and these Detailed Regulations, or are not in accordance with rectification requirements, then State Security organs may interview the person in charge and notify their superiors to promote the implementation of the prevention of espionage and other acts endangering state security.
Article 16. The following situations qualify under the “significant contribution” referred to in Article 7 of the “Counterespionage Act”:
(1) Provide important clues for the State Security organs to discover and crack down on criminal cases that seriously endanger state security;
(2) Provide the state security organs with important information to prevent and stop acts that seriously endanger state security;
(3) Coordinate closely with the state security organs as they carry out state security work responsibilities in an outstanding manner;
(4) Safeguard state security and engage in struggle against criminals who endanger the security of the country in an outstanding manner;
(5) Achieve remarkable results in educating, mobilizing and organizing personnel of their own units to prevent and stop acts that endanger state security.
Article 17. The “illegal possession of documents, materials and other articles derived from state secrets” as referred to in Article 24 of the “Counterespionage Act” includes:
(1) Persons unaware that they are carrying or storing documents, materials and other articles derived from state secrets;
(2) Persons who are aware that they are carrying documents, materials and other articles derived from state secrets who do so privately without observing formalities.
Article 18 . The term “special espionage equipment” as mentioned in Article 25 of the “Counterespionage Act” refers to the following special equipment for espionage:
(A) Covert eavesdropping and covert camera equipment;
(B) Burst transceivers, one-time pad codebooks, and tools for secret writing;
(C) Electronic monitoring and interception equipment used for collecting intelligence;
(D) Other special espionage equipment.
The confirmation of special espionage equipment shall be under the responsibility of the responsible State Security department under the State Council.
Chapter IV Legal Liability
Article 19. Any act that endangers state security shall be punished according to law by the relevant department, and the State Security organ may also give a warning. If a crime is constituted, criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.
Article 20. The following situations constitute “meritorious performance” as referred to in Article 27 of the “Counterespionage Act”:
“Significant meritorious service” displays a particularly important role in the work of state security within the performance of merits as set forth in the preceding paragraph.
(1) Uncovering and reporting the truth about other criminals who endanger the security of the country;
(2) Provide important clues and evidence so that acts endangering state security can be discovered and stopped;
(3) Assisting the State Security and judicial organs in capturing other criminals who endanger state security;
(4) Other acts that have an important role in assisting the State Security organs in safeguarding state security.
Article 21. Where there is evidence showing that someone has engaged in espionage or that the State Security organ explicitly notifies others of crimes that endanger state security, if those approached for evidence refuse to provide it then this is handled under Article 29 of the Counterespionage Act.
Article 22. When State Security organs carry out the tasks of Counterespionage work in accordance with the law, and citizens and organizations who are obliged to provide facilities or other assistance according to the law refuse to do so, this constitutes an intention to obstruct the state security organs from carrying out the tasks of Counterespionage work according to law; Article 13 of the “Counterespionage Act” prescribes punishments.
Article 23. Anyone deliberately hindering State Security organs from carrying out counterespionage tasks according to law and causing personal injury or property damage to the staff of State Security organs shall bear liability for compensation and shall be punished in accordance with Article 30 of these Regulations.
Article 24. State Security organs may decide to stop those suspected of espionage from departing the country for a certain period of time. Foreigners who violate the “Counterespionage Act” may also be restricted by State Security organs under the State Council from departing or entering the country for a period of time. Foreigners who have been deported may not enter China within 10 years of the day they were deported.
Authorized under Order 692 of the PRC State Council
Chapter V Supplementary Provisions
Article 25. Organs of State Security and Public Security shall, in accordance with laws, administrative regulations and the relevant provisions of the State, fulfill their duties of preventing, deterring and punishing acts of endangering state security other than espionage, and shall apply the relevant provisions of these Regulations.
Article 26. These Detailed Regulations shall come into force on the day they are issued. The “Implementation Rules of the PRC State Security Law” promulgated by the State Council on June 4, 1994 will be simultaneously abolished.