Chinese students are paid to “spontaneously” welcome President’s visit to the U.S.

January 13, 2011Chiafu Chen 陳家福7 Comments, , , , ,

From Radio Free Asia and Boxun

Chinese President Hu Jintao is about to visit the United States later this month. Meanwhile, Chinese consulates and student associations in U.S. universities are gathering steam to mobilize students’ interest. Multiple Chinese student associations based in and near Washington D.C. and Chicago have issued notices saying that those who register with the welcoming event can get allowances ranging from $20 to $80 and their food and travel cost reimbursed.

Despite the fact that Hu Jintao gave the directive himself last April that the protocols of diplomatic trips by Chinese leaders need reforms and that organizing large crowds of Chinese expats and students at an airport should not be required, the embassy and the consulates have started a new bout of marshaling.

Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) at the University of Maryland states in a newsletter sent to the local Chinese community, “Considering the weather is freezing, we will arrange round-trip transportation for everyone and provide reimbursement for food and travel cost in the form of 55 dollars per head.”

Following are the photos taken during President Hu Jintao’s visit in April, 2006.

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The banners of CSSA at Johns Hopkins University

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The banner  of CSSA at Georgetown University

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The banner from Philadelphia

Notification given by Chinese student association at Northwestern University, which is in Chicago area, says, “President Hu Jintao of the People’s Republic of China will arrive in Chicago and make a state visit in the afternoon on January 20. He will also go to a local high school. Any one who registers can participate in the event. Participants will be provided $20 as food and travel cost.”

Chinese consulate in Chicago allegedly urged the heads of the student associations to tell every participating Chinese student that “If any reporter comes to talk to you, say to him that you’ve come of your accord at your own expense.”

Some participants voiced their discontent with unequal pay: why those who come from out of the state get $80, those who welcome in D.C. gets $55, but in Chicago it is merely $20? Some “welcomers” from the Chicago area said “The Chicago consulate will see serious consequences by doing it this way.”

Besides, various organizations in the D.C. area also received “Minutes of Meeting Regarding Welcoming Activities for President Hu’s Visit” convened on January 6, which require that two groups, one consisting of 300 and the other 500, be dispatched to welcome Hu at the hotel he stays in, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Shuttle buses will be arranged. The embassy will provide necessary facilities for the welcoming event, including: six portable microphones, two sets of loudspeakers, several welcome banners, several American and Chinese national flags, several hand flags, several cartons of bottled water, one first-aid kit.

Though details of President Hu’s itinerary in the U.S. are yet to be revealed, parts of his trip have been leaked. Apart from an arrival ceremony, a joint press conference at the White House and a private dinner with President Obama on January 19, President Hu will also fly to Chicago on his three-day trip.

In order to make arrangements for Hu’s visit, Chinese foreign minister Yang Jiechi came to the U.S. way ahead of time, met with Secretary of the State Hilary Clinton on January 5, and flew in low-profile to Chicago to reserve hotel rooms in Chicago and met with Mayor of Chicago Richard Daley on January 7.

According to Aboluowang, Yang Jiechi has reserved over 200 hotel rooms in The Peninsula in downtown Chicago. But the grapevine also said that everything is subject to change until the last minute.

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7 comments to “Chinese students are paid to “spontaneously” welcome President’s visit to the U.S.”

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jaya Gibson. Jaya Gibson said: RT @Taosmyway: Chinese students are paid to “spontaneously” welcome President’s visit to the U.S. | Ministry of Tofu 豆腐部 http://t.co/ycGWtnD [...]

  2. William Keiser | January 16, 2011 | Permalink Reply

    So the going rate for a prostitute at UofM is $55 plus car fare.
    Well how about that?

    • Poi Oiuy | January 23, 2011 | Permalink Reply

      But that's only for Chinese students. Other people may have different rates.

  3. Bear9256 | March 29, 2011 | Permalink Reply

    屁!I got 60 bucks a day for doing it in Chicago, and I did two days! I stood outside for hours trying to get a glimpse of him, and we didn't even see him on one of the days.
    I still would've gone, however, even if there wasn't monetary incentive

  4. Mick C Loong | March 30, 2011 | Permalink Reply

    Radio Free Asia has produced wayyyy too many lies, fake news, fictions. Even US government official said it's too propagandistic. Nowadays, only a fool would not doubt any news that is produced by Radio Free Asia. It's very rare to see even any serious western media (New York Times, Washington Post, etc.) to reference from Radio Free Asia.

    • Bear9256 | March 31, 2011 | Permalink Reply

      but we were paid…
      I agree about RFA being a bunch of bullocks, but the fact still stands that we were offered monetary incentive to go stand out in the cold and look supportive

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