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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 13, 1987


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    A report on the structure of the Chinese Ministry of State Security and the membership of the special service.
    "Ministry for State Security of the GDR, Main Department II, 'Statements on Some Regimen and Structural Issues of the Ministry of State Security of the PR China'," October 13, 1987, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, BStU, ZA, HA II, 40864. Translated by Bernd Schaefer.
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[Ministry for State Security of the GDR]

[Main Department II]

[13 October 1987]

Statements on some regimen and structural issues of the Ministry of State Security of the PR China

“Ahorn”[1] is expressing here that every eligible Chinese citizen can become a member of a special service of his country upon recommendation, if he has the desire for such a job. In turn, he can also instantly and without complications leave again as soon as he has such intention.

With regard to structures “Ahorn” is saying the following:

Each province has a so-called “Main Office of State Security” consisting of a permanent employee base.

Recruitment of unofficial forces is in general pursued in close cooperation with the respective cadre departments of factories, facilities, and institutions of according regions. Those make recommendations of suitable individuals. Subsequently they are aware of the fact of unofficial activity of such individuals in case the security organs make a positive decision in order to contact them.

As a focus of the work of the Ministry “Ahorn” defined, in addition to counterintelligence, the gathering of intelligence on all subjects relating to Taiwan and the absolute guarantee to fulfill all information requirements of China on these matters.

However, the Ministry founded in 1983 is according to “Ahorn’s” knowledge in many respects still in its infancy, what is showing for instance in its structural immatureness.

In addition, the Minister[2] is a former secretary of the Chinese Youth Association and was about to become Deputy Mayor in Beijing before his appointment. He is still a young and inexperienced man who once studied science and technology. Therefore he is lacking the collective recognition needed for such a position.

With regard to personnel, the Ministry of State Security is a result of the merger of the former counter-intelligence department of the Ministry of Public Security (Department 5) and the Central Investigation Department of the CCP Central Committee. As a result, the currently existing Ministry of Public Security - similar[3] to the Ministry of Interior in the GDR - is exclusively in charge of internal issues of the PR China, while the Central Committee now just has a Department for Personal Protection left in his purview.

In contrast, the operations of military intelligence in form of the Intelligence Department with the General Staff of the People’s Liberation Army of the PR China has remained unchanged in both its function and role.

After that, “Ahorn” is reporting about the following people he is friends with, and who are supposed to be working with the Ministry of State Security of the PR China. In part, however, he is not willing here to call people by name:

1. xxxx[4], about 35 years old

She is a former classmate of “Ahorn” and is said to work at the Institute for International Studies (Economy) in Shanghai. “Ahorn” is calling the institute a covered branch of the Chinese Ministry of Security. There she has worked on Political Economy of the USSR in a leading position. Currently she is working on assignment from this institute in Cologne. From October to December 1986 she was at the German Institute for Economy (DIW) in West Berlin. There she stayed with

Dr. xxxx[5] (registered: [MfS] District Administration Berlin, Department XV).

He is in charge of the Comecon section of the DIW, and she is very familiar with him from her chaperone function during his earlier visits to China. Here “Ahorn” is mentioning that he has visited her several times during those months in West Berlin and considers her a very sympathetic person.

However, she had to end her West Berlin stay prematurely since her her husband - who is said to have already been a Main Department head in the Ministry of State Security with just being 40 years and a candidate for becoming Minister - died in China because of a false medical diagnosis.

2. A “very good friend” who is said to have worked for more than ten years for the Chinese security organ. Currently he is pondering whether to leave this job. He is said to have been a student in Bonn between 1976 and 1978. Afterwards he went in 1979 to Vienna as an attache and was later transferred to Bonn. Since 1984 he is back to Beijing again.

3. “Ahorn” is reporting that he has a “good friend” in Beijing. In addition to other people, his wife will soon be deployed in Canada on order of the “Department for Unity Questions” with the Central Committee of the CCP. It will have to be her task to integrate herself independently within the structure of the respective country with the help of a one-time financial support as a start capital; respectively she is supposed to go “under cover” in civilian life there, for instance as the owner of a China Store, in order to work among the population to gather “intelligence” in China’s interest.

“Ahorn” is rationalizing the need for such measures with the following argument: In China’s struggle against the Taiwanese intelligence service, the “overseas Chinese” are of high value and they have to be sounded out through such intelligence activities; what is the position of those Chinese vis-a-vis the PR China and the right wing Guomindang, respectively whether one can win them to take the side of the mainland.

[1] Codename (meaning “maple”) given by the GDR Ministry for State Security to an unofficial source very likely to be of Chinese origin.

[2] Jia Chunwang (born 1938). Minister of State Security 1985-1998.

[3] This is not accurate. The Ministry for State Security in the GDR encompassed all the functions of the two Chinese Ministries of State Security and Public Security under one roof.

[4] Name blackened by the Federal Commissioner for the State Security Records (BStU) in Berlin.

[5] Dto.