Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Bureau
The Third Bureau, the Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Bureau, is responsible for operations in these areas. The main activities of the Bureau include agent operations in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, and recruitment of people with Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan connections. The Bureau receives Chinese agents operating in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan when they return to the mainland for reporting, tasking or holidays. It also receives, analyzes and reports to higher levels intelligence collected by agents in its areaa of responsibility, and gives them directions on the types of intelligence required.
Some Chinese agents in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan were sent to these territories before the 1949 change-over on the mainland, but most have been dispatched more recently. While a few have are in trades and professions, most are operating in Chinese communist organs or Chinese-funded companies in Hong Kong and Macao, including the Xinhua News Agency in Hong Kong and Macao, as well as in the offices of Takung Pao and Wen Wei Po in Hong Kong. Only a small number of the postings are permanent, and most agents are replaced once every few years.
The Ministry of State Security increased its activities in Hong Kong following the reversion of the territory in 1997, where it can now operate without foreign interference against pro-democracy elements in the territory.
The Ministry of State Security is directly responsible for the work group charged with gathering intelligence in Hong Kong and Macao. This group, code-named "Winter Chrysanthemum," is mainly responsible for the following three tasks:
- Monitoring and gathering information on the activities of Taiwanese organizations and their responsible persons in Hong Kong and Macao, as well as the activities of Taiwanese political and military figures visiting Hong Kong and Macao.
- Monitoring and gathering information on activities of foreign political figures and political organizations in Hong Kong.
- Gaining access into the core of political bodies in Hong Kong and keeping abreast of the action plans of political bodies and their contacts with foreign political bodies.
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