|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ma Zhaoxu's Regular Press Conference on March 12, 2009|
On March 12, 2009, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ma Zhaoxu held a regular press conference and answered questions on Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi's visit to the US, the US House of Representatives passing a Tibet-related resolution, the Philippine President signing the Archipelagic Baselines Act, and etc.
Ma Zhaoxu: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I have two announcements to start with.
At the invitation of President Hu Jintao, President Tabaré Ramón Vázquez Rosas of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay will pay a state visit to China from March 21 to 26. China warmly welcomes President Vázquez, as it will be his first visit to China in this capacity. During the visit, Chinese leaders will hold meetings and talks with him. The two sides will sign a number of cooperation documents in multiple areas. Aside from Beijing, President Vázquez will also visit Shanghai.
At the invitation of Vietnamese Vice Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Gia Khiem, State Councilor Dai Bingguo will pay an official visit to the country through March 18 to 21 and jointly preside with his host over the third meeting of the Guiding Committee for China-Vietnam Bilateral Cooperation. During the visit, the two sides will have an extensive and in-depth exchange of views on promoting bilateral relations, deepening mutually beneficial cooperation as well as international and regional issues of common concern. I believe that the visit will bring new vitality into bilateral relations.
Now the floor is open.
Q: Today the DPRK announced that it will test-launch its communication satellite "Kwangmyongsong-2" somewhere between April 4 and 8. Do you have any comment on that?
A: We have noted relevant report. Maintaining peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the region is in the common interests of all parties. We hope relevant parties can do more that is helpful.
Q: I have a follow-up question regarding the DPRK's satellite launch. Will China see a satellite launch by the DPRK as violating the existing UN Security Council resolutions?
A: I said just now that maintaining peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the region is in the common interests of all parties. Therefore we hope relevant parties can contribute to that.
Q: I have two questions. Foreign Minister Yang is currently in the United States. Can you brief us on his meeting with Secretary of State Clinton and give us details of their discussion on the confrontation in the South China Sea? Will that issue come up during his meeting with President Obama? Can you tell us what else will the two discuss? My second question is what is China hoping to accomplish at the G20 Finance Ministers' Meeting in London? Does China have any proposals to make or issues it wants to address?
A: On your first question, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi is currently visiting the US. He held talks with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. They had an in-depth exchange of views on China-US relations as well as international and regional issues of common concern, and reached many consensus. Bilateral relations are at a new standpoint and faced with important development opportunities. Both China and the US shoulder major responsibilities for peace, stability and development of the world, and have broad common interests. They should set store by overall and long-term interests, earnestly implement the important consensus reached between President Hu Jintao and President Obama, strengthen dialogue, exchanges and cooperation in a wide range of areas following the principles of mutual respect, seeking common ground while shelving differences, cooperation on a win-win basis, and promote the healthy and stable development of bilateral relations. According to my knowledge, they also discussed bilateral high-level exchanges, strategic and economic dialogue mechanism, London Financial Summit, the situation in Taiwan Strait among others. The two also exchanged views on the situation on the Korean Peninsula and regional hotspot issues.
On your question about relevant US ship engaging in illegal activities in China's exclusive economic zone, Foreign Minister Yang expounded on China's principled position and concern.
On your second question, the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting will be held in London. Chinese Finance Minister Xie Xuren and Governor Zhou Xiaochuan of the People's Bank of China will both attend the meeting. They will expound on China's position on how to address the financial crisis through international cooperation.
Q: Yesterday, the US House of Representatives adopted a resolution, criticizing the Chinese Government's Tibet policy and touting the Dalai Lama. How do you comment on this?
A: The Chinese Government and people express strong dissatisfaction and resolute opposition over the resolution deliberated and adopted by the US House of Representatives. Turning a blind eye to facts, making groundless accusation against China's ethnic and religious policy and whitewashing Dalai's prolonged engagement in anti-China separatist activities, this resolution is a grave violation of the fundamental norms governing international relations and gross interference in China's internal affairs. China has made solemn representations to the US side.
We urge relevant party of the US Congress to immediately correct mistakes, stop interfering in China's internal affairs by making use of Tibet-related issues and stop doing things that could disrupt and compromise China-US relations.
Q: I have two questions. Firstly, Philippine President Arroyo recently signed a Baselines Act which includes Huangyan Island and some islands of Nansha Islands as Philippine territory. Could you comment? Secondly, on March 10, a suicide blast at a mosque in south Sri Lanka left many dead and injured. Do you have any comment?
A: You may refer to the statement released by the Foreign Ministry over Philippine President Arroyo signing the Baselines Act. I would like to reiterate that Huangyan Island and Nansha Islands have always been parts of China's territory. The People's Republic of China owns indisputable sovereignty over these islands and adjacent waters. Sovereignty claims over Huangyan Island and Nansha Islands by any other country are illegal and invalid.
On your second question, the Chinese Government condemns the suicide attack at the Sri Lankan mosque. We express deep condolences to the victims and sincere sympathy to the injured.
Q:I am wondering if the incident in the South China Sea between Chinese and US naval ships would make it more difficult for China to participate in international activities such as the anti-piracy campaign in Somali, because even if it is an international campaign, that requires a lot of cooperation of the U.S. Do you think in the future there will be less this kind of cooperation or the cooperation will be harmed?
A: I can not see any necessary connection between the two. China has already made clear its position on the activities of the US Navy surveillance ships in China's exclusive economic zone.
Our resolve is firm on China's participation in the international anti-piracy cooperation, whereas we have always taken an active attitude and constructive actions. We will continue doing so in the future.
Q: I want to get more description of what has happened in the South China Sea from the Chinese side. The Pentagon has been very descriptive of what has been happening. Can we get the same kind of description from the Chinese side as well, especially about the Chinese ships involved? The Pentagon says there were three Chinese government ships and two Chinese flagged trawlers involved. Were they police ships, naval ships or civilian ships?
A: I already elaborated on China's position about this incident yesterday. The activities of the said US ship in China's exclusive economic zone without our permission have broken international laws as well as China's laws and regulations. It is totally justified and reasonable for China to take actions to safeguard its rights in the sea waters under its jurisdiction in accordance with law. We request the US side to adopt effective measures to prevent similar incidents from happening again. I would emphasize here that a stable and sound Sino-US relationship is in the fundamental interests of the two countries and two peoples, hence conducive to peace, stability and development of the Asia-Pacific region. This demands the concerted efforts of both sides.
Q:According to media reports today, the China-Japan Security Dialogue will be held before the end of this month. Can you confirm it and be more specific about the date?
A:I don't know what you have mentioned is a dialogue between the militaries or the Ministries of Foreign Affairs. If it is the first case,I suggest you inquire the spokesperson of the Defense Ministry.
If there are no more questions, that's the end. Thank you all.