The Chinese government claims to have arrested a CIA spy who’d been collecting military intelligence in China, Chinese state-run media reported Friday.
China’s top spy agency, the Ministry of State Security (MSS), announced it had taken “lawful coercive measures to eliminate the threat” of a suspect named Zeng that the agency alleged had been collecting “sensitive military information” for the CIA in exchange for “spy funds,” according to state media outlet China Daily.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) recently unveiled a new Counter-Espionage Law on July 1, 2023, which “expands the definition of espionage from covering state secrets and intelligence to any documents, data, materials or items related to national security interests, without defining terms,” according to the U.S. Director of National Intelligence (DNI).
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Zeng was allegedly previously employed by a Chinese “military-industrial group” and had access to classified information, according to China Daily. While on a company study abroad trip to Italy, a U.S. Embassy official named “Seth” allegedly approached Zeng and struck up a relationship that evolved into “dinners, outings and attending opera performances,” China Daily reported.
Seth allegedly first persuaded Zeng to question his faith in the Chinese political system, before revealing himself to be a CIA operative attached to the Rome station, according to China Daily. Subsequently, Seth allegedly propositioned Zeng with “substantial rewards” and promised to arrange for Zeng and his family to immigrate to the U.S. in exchange for sensitive Chinese military information, China Daily reported.
Zeng allegedly accepted the CIA agent’s offer and began spying when he returned to China after completing the company study abroad trip in Italy, according to the report. In China, Zeng allegedly met with CIA operatives several times, during which he provided sensitive intelligence in exchange for funding, China Daily reported.
At some point later, China’s “national security department” allegedly arrested Zeng, who now awaits prosecution, according to China Daily.
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The MSS recently opened a social media account on the Chinese platform WeChat and called on “all parts of society” to take part in the communist nation’s counter-espionage efforts, the Daily Caller News Foundation recently reported.
In accordance with the MSS announcement, the Chinese government has stepped-up “national security theory education” across the country, according to Global Times on Thursday. The education campaigns instruct citizens on how to identify and report espionage, according to the report.
Similarly, under the pretense of “National Defense Education,” the Chinese military has also been conducting military boot camps across China this summer, training kindergarteners to use firearms and operate as soldiers.
The kindergarten boot camps train the “little soldiers” to revere martyrs from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and handle toy weapons including grenades, rifles and mortars, the DCNF found.
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