"Typically, the aspiring correspondents attended the University of International Relations in Beijing or another similar university in Nanjing, "where they learned to master a foreign language and how to do intelligence work," the journalist said.
They would then work abroad for a set number of years, "and then disappear," he said. "You wouldn't see them again."
How many agents the State Security Ministry actually appoints depends on the rank and importance of the media outlet. There are several major media outlets that maintain correspondents abroad.
"With a powerful, high ranking media outlet, the Ministry of State Security might say, 'You have 20 positions? Maybe we can send five.' ""
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