On October 30, 2008, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu held a regular press conference and answered questions on the latest progress in rescuing Chinese hostages in Sudan, the Six-Party Talks, the international financial summit and etc.
Jiang Yu: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. First, I'd like to welcome our dear visitors sitting behind. Now I have an announcement to make.
At the invitation of Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, Zainab Bangura, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Sierra Leone will pay an official visit to China from November 4 to 9.
Now the floor is open.
Q: Sources say that Dalai's personal representatives have left New Delhi for Beijing to talk with the Chinese Central Government. When will they arrive in Beijing? When will the talk start? Secondly, about the Chinese hostages in Sudan, exactly how many of them were killed, how many were rescued and how many are still missing?
A: About the contact and consultation between relevant department of the Central Government and Dalai Lama's personal representatives, competent authorities will release information in due course. I suggest that you keep an eye on what they are going to say.
As for your second question, according to the latest information, among the nine CNPC workers kidnapped in Sudan, four were killed, three were rescued, two are still missing. The rescued have already received medical treatment and are now safe.
This morning, a working group led by the Foreign Ministry, with members from the Ministry of Commerce and CNPC left for Sudan. The working group will join our Embassy in Sudan in taking care of the aftermath and conveying condolences of the CPC Central Committee and State Council to the victims and consolation to the rescued. They will keep contact with Sudan, urging it to continue the rescue efforts to their best, bring the murderers to justice and take every measure necessary to protect life and property of Chinese citizens in Sudan.
Q: Will China attend the G20 leaders' financial summit to be held in Washington on November 15? Which Chinese leader will attend?
A: We have received the US invitation to attend the G20 "summit on financial market and world economy". We are considering taking part, and are coordinating with the US on it. Relevant information will be released once it's confirmed.
Q: Is China ready to capitalize the IMF fund which is set up to help poor countries affected by the financial crisis? The US Presidential Candidate Obama urged the Chinese Government to stop manipulating its currency, which he believed was the cause of US trade deficit to China. How do you respond to that?
A: About your first question, the current international financial crisis has exerted grave impact on the global financial system and economic development. The international community should pull weight together to jointly address this crisis. China is ready to step up cooperation with other countries and major international financial organizations including the IMF to safeguard stability of the global financial market and promote economic growth. As a member state of the IMF, China provides financial support to relevant countries through the IMF Financial Transaction Plan. We will consider taking part in more such plans within our capacity.
About your second question, the RMB exchange rate is not the fundamental cause of the US trade deficit. Instead, trade deficit is a result of the accelerated industrial division against the background of economic globalization. We are ready to work with the US on the basis of equality, mutual understanding and friendly consultation to properly handle bilateral trade issues. Meanwhile, we hope the US will lift its export restrictions to China and eliminate trade and investment barriers, which will help address the trade imbalance between the two countries.
The US Presidential election is domestic politics of the US. For decades, to develop China-US relations has been a bi-partisan consensus, which also represents the mainstream of the public opinion in the US. We hope and believe that whoever wins the election will value China-US relations. We are ready to work with the US to enhance mutual trust, deepen cooperation and properly handle disputes so as to further promote our constructive cooperation.
Q: Sudan and China gave different numbers of casualties and those missing in the kidnapping incident. Do you reach consensus on that now? Could you also tell us who are the members of the working group handling the incident?
A: I have briefed you earlier on the latest developments. Among those kidnapped, four were killed, three were rescued and two were still missing. This is the latest figure I have got up to now.
On October 19th, just the next day after the kidnapping, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has sent a working group to Sudan to handle the aftermath. The second working group, a governmental taskforce headed by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, with members from the Ministry of Commerce and the CNPC set off to Sudan early this morning.
Q: According to the agreement reached at the meeting of heads of delegations of the Six Party Talks, the second-phase action of the Talks should be accomplished by the end of this month. However, it obviously is unlikely to happen before tomorrow. What will China attribute it to?
A: At present, there are opportunities for the Six Party Talks to press ahead. All the stakeholders are committed to implementing the second-phase action now. China stands ready to make joint efforts with all the related parties to properly solve relevant issues at an early date and finalize the second phase action in a comprehensive and balance manner, so as to further the process of the Six Party Talks. The six parties have the consensus on holding the next meeting of the heads of delegations at their earliest convenience. We are having contact and coordination with all the related parties to fix a date.
If there are no more questions, thanks for your attendance. See you.