Ministry of Public Security of the People's Republic of China
中华人民共和国公安部
Zhōnghuá Rénmín Gònghéguó Gōng'ānbù
National Emblem of the People
Police Badge,P.R.China.svg
Flag of the People

Flag of the People's Police of China
Agency overview
Formed1954; 68 years ago (1954)
Preceding agency
TypeConstituent Department of the State Council (cabinet-level),
National level police and counterintelligence agency
Jurisdiction China
HeadquartersBeijing
Employees1.9 million
Ministers responsible
  • Wang Xiaohong, Minister
  • Du Hangwei
    Xu Ganlu
    Liu Zhao, Vice-Ministers
  • Sun Xinyang, Leader of the Discipline Inspection & Supervision Team Dispatched from the CCDI & the NSC
  • Feng Yan, Politics Supervisor
  • Chen Siyuan, the Assistant to the Minister
Parent agencyState Council
Child agencies
Websitemps.gov.cn

The Ministry of Public Security (Chinese: 公安部; pinyin: Gōng'ānbù)[note 1] is a government ministry of the People's Republic of China responsible for public and political security. It oversees more than 1.9 million of the country's law enforcement officers and as such the vast majority of the People's Police (Chinese: 人民警察; pinyin: Rénmín Jǐngchá). The MPS is a nationwide police force; however, counterintelligence and political security remain core functions.[1][2][3]

The ministry was established in 1949 (after the Chinese Communist Party's victory in the Chinese Civil War) as the successor to the Central Social Affairs Department and was known as "Ministry of Public Security of the Central People's Government" until 1954.[4] Grand General Luo Ruiqing of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) was its first minister. As the ministry's organization was based on Soviet and Eastern Bloc models, it was responsible for all aspects of national security; ranging from regular police work to intelligence, counterintelligence and the suppression of anti-communist political and societal sentiments.[4][5] Military intelligence affairs remained with the General Staff Department, while the International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was active in fomenting revolutionary tendencies worldwide by funneling weapons, money and resources to various pro-CCP movements.[6]

The ministry employs a system of Public Security Bureaus throughout the provinces, cities, municipalities and townships of China. The special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau maintain nominally separate police forces. The ministry is headed by the Minister of Public Security, who is nominated by the Premier of the People's Republic of China and confirmed by the National People's Congress (NPC). Wang Xiaohong has been the current minister since June 2022.

History

See also: Chinese intelligence activity abroad, Chinese espionage in the United States, Operation Fox Hunt, and Operation Sky Net

The Ministry of Public Security was among the first government organs of the PRC. It superseded the Ministry of Public Security of the CCP's Central Military Commission (CMC), a transitional body created in July 1949 by removing the security service remit from the CCP's Central Social Affairs Department (SAD). The MPS began operations on 1 November 1949, at the end of a two-week-long National Conference of Senior Public Security Cadres. Most of its initial staff of less than 500 cadres came from the (former) regional CCP North China Department of Social Affairs. At the national level, its creation signaled the formal abolition of the SAD. The ministry moved to its present location, in the heart of the one-time foreign legation quarters in Beijing, in the spring of 1950.[7]

The MPS's Guangzhou office historically handled foreign spies such as Larry Wu-tai Chin.[1]

With the creation of the Ministry of State Security (MSS) in July 1983, MPS lost much of its counterintelligence personnel and remit.[1] Scholars Jichang Lulu and Filip Jirouš have argued that the establishment of the MSS "may have contributed to the illusion that the MPS is simply a law-enforcement police body, separate from intelligence agencies."[2] According to analyst Alex Joske, "the MPS lost much of its foreign intelligence remit after the MSS's creation, but has established new units for cross-border clandestine operations since then."[1]

Following the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and massacre, the MPS worked to counter Operation Yellowbird.[2]

The MPS and its officers have been active abroad in Operation Fox Hunt and Operation Sky Net.[8][9][10] The MPS under Sun Lijun had reporters from The Wall Street Journal in Hong Kong under "full operational surveillance" for their reporting of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad scandal.[11][1]

In 2017, Europol signed a "strategic cooperation agreement" with the MPS.[12][2] Starting in 2019, the MPS began replacing "domestic security" with "political security" in the names of its units.[2]

List of ministers

No. Name From To Premier
1 Luo Ruiqing October 1949 September 1959 Zhou Enlai
2 Xie Fuzhi September 1959 March 1972 Zhou Enlai
3 Li Zhen March 1972 1973 Zhou Enlai
4 Hua Guofeng 1973 March 1977 Zhou Enlai
Hua Guofeng
5 Zhao Cangbi March 1977 April 1983 Hua Guofeng
Zhao Ziyang
6 Liu Fuzhi May 1983 August 1985 Zhao Ziyang
7 Ruan Chongwu September 1985 March 1987 Zhao Ziyang
8 Wang Fang April 1987 November 1990 Zhao Ziyang
Li Peng
9 Tao Siju December 1990 March 1998 Li Peng
10 Jia Chunwang March 1998 December 2002 Li Peng
Zhu Rongji
11 Zhou Yongkang December 2002 October 2007 Zhu Rongji
Wen Jiabao
12 Meng Jianzhu October 2007 December 2012 Wen Jiabao
13 Guo Shengkun December 2012 November 2017 Wen Jiabao
Li Keqiang
14 Zhao Kezhi November 2017 June 2022 Li Keqiang
15 Wang Xiaohong June 2022 incumbent Li Keqiang

Organization

Headquarters of the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing
Headquarters of the Ministry of Public Security in Beijing

The MPS is organized into functional departments (see below). Subordinate to the MPS are the provincial- and municipal-level PSB's (Public Security Bureau) and sub-bureaus at the county and urban district levels. At the grassroots level, finally, there are police stations (Chinese: 派出所; pinyin: Pàichūsuǒ) which serve as the direct point of contact between police and ordinary citizens. While public security considerations have weighed heavily at all levels of administration since the founding of the PRC, the police are perceived by some outside observers to wield progressively greater influence at lower levels of government. Provincial public security bureaus are subject to dual supervision by both local provincial governments and the central government.[13] The ministry is also closely associated with the development of surveillance technologies used by police in China through the Third Research Institute (Chinese: 第三研究所; pinyin: Dì-sān Yánjiūsuǒ; lit. 'No. 3 Research Institute') focused on the development of AI based “smart surveillance,” and censorship technologies.[14]

Departmental structure

At the time of its creation, the Ministry of Public Security had a departmental structure comprising one general office and six functional directorates, numbered sequentially and responsible for political security, economic security, public order and administration, border security, armed security, and personnel. Today the ministry is organized into the following departments:[citation needed]

Railway, navigation, civil aviation, forestry and anti-smuggling public security departments are under the dual leadership of their superior administration and the MPS.[15]

Internal publications

See also: Internal media of the Chinese Communist Party

The journal Public Security Construction (Chinese: 公安建设; pinyin: Gōng'ān jiànshè)was a classified serial publication for internal purposes.[16] During the disastrous Great Leap Forward between 1958 and 1961, the circular Public Security Work Bulletin (Chinese: 公安工作简报; pinyin: Gōng'ān gōngzuò jiǎnbào) was a top-secret serial which often described China's serious food shortages, social unrest and famine directly contradicting Mao Zedong's claims of "bountiful economic fruit".[17][18] Another periodical the People's Public Security (Chinese: 人民公安; pinyin: Rénmín gōng'ān)[note 2] was also produced and classified as "for official use only", functioning for the purposes of internal intelligence sharing and coordination among various branches of the public security apparatus.[19][20]

Front organization

The MPS' First Bureau operates a front organization called the China Association for Friendship.[2]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Mandarin pronunciation: [kʊ́ŋ.án.pû]; abbr. from Chinese: 公共安全部; pinyin: Gōnggòng Ānquán Bù; lit. 'Public Security Ministry' Mandarin pronunciation: [kʊ́ŋ.kʊ̂ŋ án.tɕʰɥɛ̌n pû]
  2. ^ Its official English-language title is People's Police.

References

Citations

  1. ^ a b c d e Joske, Alex (January 25, 2022). "Secret police: The Ministry of Public Security's clandestine foreign operations" (PDF). Sinopsis. Archived (PDF) from the original on January 25, 2022. Retrieved March 2, 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Lulu, Jichang; Jirouš, Filip (February 21, 2022). "Back to the Cheka: The Ministry of Public Security's political protection work" (PDF). Sinopsis. Archived (PDF) from the original on February 21, 2022. Retrieved March 2, 2022.
  3. ^ Schwarck, Edward (July 2018). "Intelligence and Informatization: The Rise of the Ministry of Public Security in Intelligence Work in China". The China Journal. 80: 1–23. doi:10.1086/697089. ISSN 1324-9347. S2CID 149764208.
  4. ^ a b Guo, Xuezhi (2012). "From the Social Affairs Department to Ministry of Public Security". China's Security State: Philosophy, Evolution, and Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 64–105. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139150897.003. ISBN 978-1-139-15089-7. OCLC 1277069527.
  5. ^ Schoenhals, Michael (2012). Spying for the People: Mao's Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139084765. ISBN 978-1-139-08476-5. OCLC 1030095349.
  6. ^ Directorate of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency (December 1971). "Intelligence Report: The International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist Party" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on May 31, 2012. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
  7. ^ Wang Zhongfang, "Gonganbu shi zemyang chenglide," in Zhu Chunlin (ed.) Lishi shunjian (Beijing: Qunzhong chubanshe, 1999), Vol. 1, pp. 3–16.
  8. ^ Gan, Nectar (April 18, 2015). "Revealed: the team behind China's Operation Fox Hunt against graft suspects hiding abroad". South China Morning Post. Retrieved April 1, 2022.
  9. ^ Rotella, Sebastian; Berg, Kirsten (July 22, 2021). "Operation Fox Hunt: How China Exports Repression Using a Network of Spies Hidden in Plain Sight". ProPublica. Archived from the original on March 5, 2022. Retrieved March 3, 2022.
  10. ^ Walden, Max (January 18, 2022). "'Why stop?': NGO says Australia's failure to block forced return of residents to China has encouraged Beijing". ABC News. Archived from the original on February 28, 2022. Retrieved March 5, 2022.
  11. ^ Wright, Tom; Hope, Bradley (January 7, 2019). "China Offered to Bail Out Troubled Malaysian Fund in Return for Deals". The Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Archived from the original on February 12, 2022. Retrieved March 5, 2022.
  12. ^ Godement, François; Vasselier, Abigaël (December 1, 2017). "China at the gates: A new power audit of EU-China relations". European Council on Foreign Relations. Archived from the original on March 6, 2022. Retrieved March 6, 2022.
  13. ^ Cheng, Ming (March 1, 1997). "Spy Headquarters Behind the Shrubs -- Supplement to 'Secrets About CPC Spies'". Federation of American Scientists. Archived from the original on July 17, 2021. Retrieved July 18, 2021.
  14. ^ Kania, Elsa (November 16, 2017). "Seeking a Panacea: The Party-State's Plans for Artificial Intelligence (Part 2)". Centre for Advanced China Research (CACR). Archived from the original on July 17, 2021. Retrieved July 18, 2021.
  15. ^ "China Police". Archived from the original on December 8, 2012. Retrieved September 12, 2011.
  16. ^ Schoenhals, Michael (February 18, 2013). Spying for the People: Mao's Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Cambridge University Press. pp. 105–6. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139084765. ISBN 9781139619714. OCLC 1030095349. Archived from the original on August 5, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2020.
  17. ^ Cheek, Timothy, ed. (August 23, 2010). A Critical Introduction to Mao. Cambridge University Press. p. 116. doi:10.1017/cbo9780511781476. ISBN 9781139789042. Archived from the original on March 5, 2022. Retrieved July 20, 2021.
  18. ^ Schoenhals, Michael (February 18, 2013). Spying for the People: Mao's Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Cambridge University Press. pp. 31, 42, 106. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139084765. ISBN 9781139619714. OCLC 1030095349. Archived from the original on August 5, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2020.
  19. ^ Schoenhals, Michael (February 18, 2013). Spying for the People: Mao's Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Cambridge University Press. p. 129. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139084765. ISBN 9781139619714. OCLC 1030095349. Archived from the original on August 5, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2020.
  20. ^ Lim, J.; Petrone, K. (December 14, 2010). Gender Politics and Mass Dictatorship: Global Perspectives. Springer. p. 238. doi:10.1057/9780230283275. ISBN 9780230283275. Archived from the original on August 6, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2020.

Sources