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Press Release 20140310

Thursday, March 10, 2014

Key Points of the Press Conference held by Wang Yi,

China's Minister of Foreign Affairs at the Second Session of the 12th National People's Congress

I. On China’s Relations with Neighboring Countries

China will more actively practice the guideline of "amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness", and will help its neighboring countries and peoples benefit more from China's reform and opening. China is willing to listen to voices from neighboring countries and respond to their doubts about China's neighborhood policies.

As for China's territorial and maritime disputes with some countries, China would like to carry out equal-footed consultation and negotiation and properly handle them by peaceful means on the basis of respecting historical facts and international law. We will never bully smaller countries, yet we will never accept unreasonable demands from smaller countries. On issues of territory and sovereignty, China's position is firm and clear. We will not take anything that isn't ours, but we will defend every inch of territory that belongs to us.

II. On China-US Relations

The biggest highlight of China-US relations in 2013 was the historic meeting between President Xi Jinping and President Obama at the Sunnylands. The two sides reached important consensus on working together to build a new model of major-country relations. At the heart of this new model of major-country relationship is no conflict or confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation.

The China-US relationship is both very important and very complex. Over these past 35 years since the two countries established diplomatic relations, China-US dialogue and cooperation has increasingly deepened. And the needs for cooperation far exceed our differences. Our experience and lessons of the past 35 years come down to one point, that is, we need to respect each other. If one compares the new model of major-country relations between China and the United States to a building, then mutual respect is the foundation of that building. When the two sides truly respect each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, social system and development path, and core interests and major concerns, the foundation of China-US relationship will be a solid one that can withstand storms and truly grow into an edifice of win-win cooperation.

III. On China-Russia Relations

The China-Russia relationship is at its best period in history, characterized by a high level of mutual trust, firm support for each other and intensifying cooperation in various fields.

In 2014, we must do all we can to upgrade practical cooperation and make new breakthroughs in our cooperation on some big projects in particular, organize a successful China-Russia year of friendly exchange between the young people to consolidate and deepen the social foundation for China-Russia friendship, work together to uphold the victory of the Second World War and post-war international order and make good preparations for 2015, which will mark the 70th anniversary of the victories of the World Anti-Fascist War and the Chinese People's War against Japanese Aggression.

IV. On China-Europe Relations

"Cooperation" is the key word in China-Europe relations. China and Europe are two large civilizations and two big markets, and our cooperation is comprehensive and strategic in nature. Particularly when China shifts its development pattern and embarks on comprehensive and in-depth reform, Europe is a strategic partner with whom our cooperation will have great potential.

Europe has a priority place in China's diplomatic agenda this year. President Xi Jinping will visit Europe in late March. This will be yet another major diplomatic action taken by China to advance major-power relations. Through this historic visit, the two sides will strengthen win-win cooperation in some priority areas, such as scientific and technological innovation, energy and environmental conservation, a new type of urbanization, connectivity and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. We also hope to speed up the negotiation toward a China-EU investment agreement and increase strategic communication with the Europeans in international affairs and work together to promote democracy in international relations and a more multi-polar world. It is believed that the visit will open a new chapter in the history of China-Europe relations.

V. On the Issue of Ukraine

China follows a just and objective position on the issue of Ukraine.

It is regretful that the situation in Ukraine has come to what it is today. There is a complex history behind it as well as conflicting interests. The more complex the problem is, the more necessary that it is handled in a prudent way.

China urges that keeping in mind the fundamental interests of all ethnic communities in Ukraine and the interests of regional peace and stability, the priority now is to exercise calm and restraint and prevent further escalation of the situation. The parties should carry out dialogue and consultation to put the issue on the track of a political settlement. China is in communication with various parties, and we will play a constructive role in bringing about a political settlement of the Ukrainian issue.

VI. On China-Japan Relations

China and Japan are next-door neighbors. We have every reason to have an amicable relationship. The current situation is not something we want to see and is not in the interests of the people in either country.

When China and Japan normalized diplomatic relations in 1972, the two sides reached important common understanding and consensus on properly handling history, Taiwan, Diaoyu Islands and other issues. This was the precondition for the normalization of diplomatic relations and the basis for a return to friendly relations between China and Japan. Yet the recent comments and actions of the Japanese leader betrayed the spirit of 1972 and undermined the foundation of China-Japan relations.

On issues of principle such as history and territory, there is no room for compromise. Only by making a clean break with the past and stop going back on one's words, can the China-Japan relations emerge from the current impasse and have a future. Only by truly committing to a peaceful path and stop saying one thing and doing something else, can a country gain the trust of its neighbors and the world. I hope Japan's leaders can understand these basic points and respect human conscience and the bottom line of international justice.

VII. On the Situation of the Korean Peninsula

The Korean Peninsula is right on China's doorstep. We have a red line all along: that is, we will never allow war or instability on the Korean Peninsula.

As for the best way to handle the current situation on the Korean Peninsula, three things needs to be done. First, we need to climb the slope of denuclearization. The nuclear issue is the crux of the matter. Only with denuclearization can the Korean Peninsula enjoy genuine and lasting peace. Second, we need to work hard to overcome the stumbling block of mutual mistrust. There is a woeful lack of mutual trust between the parties, especially the DPRK and the United States. This is the stumbling block before us. It has caused sustained tension on the Korean Peninsula and several disruptions to the Six-Party Talks. We hope that the parties will exercise restraint, show goodwill and build mutual trust little by little. Third, we must follow the right way forward, which is dialogue. Confrontation will only bring tension and war will only cause disaster. Equal-footed dialogue, consultation and negotiation is the only right way forward. The Six-Party Talks is the only dialogue mechanism acceptable to all the parties. As the host country, China hopes it can be resumed as soon as possible. Some dialogue is better than none, and better early than late.

For more information please refer to website: http://www.fmprc.gov.cn/eng/zxxx/t1135385.shtml

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