|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu's Regular Press Conference on 31 May, 2007|
On the afternoon of 31 May, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu held a regular press conference and answered questions on Vice Premier Wu Yi's visit to Russia, the meeting between Iran and EU on the Iranian nuclear issue, China, Japan and ROK Foreign Ministers' meeting, Hill's visit to China and other issues.
Jiang: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I have three announcements to make:
At the invitation of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf, Chinese President Hu Jintao will attend the outreach session of the G-8 Summit to be held in Germany and pay a state visit to Sweden from June 6 to 10.
At the invitation of Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev who chairs the Russian organization committee for the Year of Russia and the Year of China, Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi who chairs China's organization committee, will attend the 11th International Economic Forum to be held in St. Petersburg and activities related to the "China Year in Russia" from June 8 to 12.
At the invitation of Premier Wen Jiabao, Prime Minister Owen Arthur of Barbados will pay an official visit to China from June 6 to 10.
Now I am happy to take your questions.
Q: Please brief us on the schedule of Vice Premier Wu Yi's visit to Russia.
A: Vice Premier Wu Yi will lead the Chinese delegation to Russia and attend the 11th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum and relevant activities of the "China Year in Russia" from June 8 to 12.
The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum is currently the largest economic forum in the Commonwealth of Independent States as well as central and Eastern Europe region. It is held in St. Petersburg, Russia every June. Up to now, totaled 10 forums were held. And this year's forum is the 11th of its kind be held in St. Petersburg from June 8 to 11. Chinese delegations attended the forum in 2005 and 2006.
Vice Premier Wu Yi's participation in the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum this year is a big event at the national level of the "China Year in Russia". Besides attending activities related to the Forum, she will also meet with Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev and President Klaus Schwab of the World Economic Forum, and attend a round-table meeting on China-Russia trade and investment cooperation together with the Russian side. She will also be present at a series of activities, including the "10-Year -- Hua Wei in Russia", the opening ceremony of "Shanghai Week" and the completion ceremony of the business center "Pearl in the Baltic Sea", the foundation stone laying ceremony of "China Trade Center in Moscow" as well as the launching ceremony of the representative office of the Export-Import Bank of China in St. Petersburg.
Q: It's reported that the US is going to sell C-130 transport aircraft to India. This is the first ever large-scale US arms sales to India. The US said that this will further promote the US-India strategic partnership, which benefits the stability in South Asia. What's your comment? Secondly, a human rights group issued a report recently, accusing that China is still restricting foreign media's reporting activities in Tibet. What's your comment?
A: On the first question, I haven't read relevant report. China upholds the new security concept featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and coordination. We hope the US-Indian cooperation be conducive to peace and stability of the region and the world at large.
On the second question, "Reporters without Borders" made some irresponsible and groundless remarks concerning two foreign journalists violated regulations when they did reporting in Tibet. The Chinese Government protects the lawful rights of foreign journalists to cover China. Their normal reporting activities will not be restricted as long as they abide by relevant regulations. In the meantime, we also hope that foreign journalists can observe laws and regulations in China and relevant organizations can respect facts, and cover China objectively and fairly.
Q: It's reported that Iranian chief negotiator Larijari and EU foreign policy chief Solana will hold talks on the Iranian nuclear issue on May 31. What's your comment?
A: It's the best choice to resolve the Iranian nuclear issue peacefully through diplomatic negotiations. It's also in the common interest of the international community. China hopes that the meeting will yield positive results, which will lead to formal talks at an early date, and a comprehensive, long-term and proper solution.
Q: Lee-Teng-hui, who is visiting Japan, will pay homage to the Yasukuni Shrine. What's your comment?
A: The purpose of Lee-Teng-hui's visit to Japan is to rally support for the "Taiwan Independence" and undermind China-Japan relations. We express strong dissatisfaction to the Japanese Government for allowing Lee-Teng-hui to visit Japan.
Q: On Lee-Teng-hui's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine. He mentioned in particular that he is going there for his brother. What's your comment? China-Japan relations are markedly improved through Prime Minister Abe's visit to China and Premier Wen's visit to Japan in April. Will Lee-Teng-hui's visit to the Shrine impair China-Japan relations?
A: It's well known to all that what kind of person Lee-Teng-hui is. The Taiwan question bears on sovereignty and territorial integrity of China, at the core of China's interests. It is China's domestic affair. We consistently request countries concerned to strictly abide by their commitment on the Taiwan questions, stick to the one-China policy, and refrain from offering political platform for the secessionist forces of "Taiwan Independence".
It's in the fundamental interest of China and Japan to ensure stable development of the bilateral relations, and it needs our joint efforts. Japan's proper handling of the issues of Taiwan and history is the fundamental prerequisite for healthy and stable bilateral relations. We hope Japan can take China's solemn representation and grave concerns seriously, properly handle questions concerning Taiwan and history in real earnest, and work with China to press ahead with bilateral relations.
Q: Vice Foreign Minister Wu Dawei met with Mr. Hill yesterday. What were discussed? Is there any progress on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula? It's reported that Assistant Foreign Minister He Yafei talked about the Darfur issue with Mr. Hill during their meeting. Please brief us on that.
A: Vice Foreign Minister Wu Dawei met with the US Assistant Secretary of State Hill on May 30. They exchanged in-depth views on issues of common interest, including the Six-Party Talks, the DPRK-related fund issue in Banco Delta Asia. China hopes that relevant issues can be resolved properly by taking various parties' concerns into consideration, so as to implement the initial actions at an early date, and promote the process of the Six-Party Talks.
Assistant Foreign Minister He Yafei met with him as well yesterday. They discussed relevant issues concerning China-US relations, giving current China-US relations credits. The high level exchanges and those at various levels between the two have been frequent, the consultation and cooperation in various fields and on major regional and international issues have been fruitful, and China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue and Strategic Dialogue mechanism are developing well. China and the US are ready to implement consensus reached by leaders of the two countries, respect each other, properly handle concerns and differences of each other, especially the Taiwan questions, strengthen dialogue, cooperation and mutual trust, so that China-US strategic and cooperative relations can develop healthily and stably.
As for the Darfur issue, recently, thanks to the joint efforts of all parties, there has been some positive progress. The Sudanese Government has reached a consensus with the UN and AU on the second phase of the Annan plan, and is waiting for the proposal by the UN and AU on implementing the third phase of the Annan plan. Under the current circumstances, new sanctions on Sudan will only complicate the issue and will not be conducive to resolving this issue. China calls upon all parties to stay restrained and patient, implement the Annan three-phase peace-keeping plan, promote the political process in the Darfur region, and improve the humanitarian and security situation there through dialogue and equal consultation, so as to strive for a political resolution.
Q: What measures has China taken to crack down upon the illegal timber import from countries like Myanmar?
A: In China, logging must comply with relevant laws and regulations. Logging and trading by Chinese companies with other countries should also abide by laws and regulations there. The Chinese Government has established a contact mechanism with neighboring countries and taken effective measures to crack down upon illegal logging and trading.
The position of the Chinese Government on cooperation with Myanmar is very clear. We never allow any Chinese citizen to log illegally in Myanmar. The governments of the two countries have strengthened border management and made achievements in cracking down upon law breaches including illegal logging.
Q: The foreign ministers of China, Japan and the ROK will meet in the ROK. What's the significance of this meeting? What suggestions will China put forward? Will the DPRK nuclear issue and Li Denghui's visit to Japan be discussed?
A: Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi will attend the foreign ministers' meeting of China, Japan and the ROK and the ACD Foreign Ministers' meeting in ROK, June 3. The timing of the meeting is significant this year, which marks the 35th anniversary of the normalization of China-Japan diplomatic relations and the 15th anniversary of the establishment of China-ROK diplomatic relations. The three countries are of importance in this region and have significant impact on world peace and development. We believe that we should press ahead with the trilateral cooperation on the basis of mutual trust, respect, equality, and mutual benefit. And I believe the three foreign ministers will exchange in-depth views on bilateral relations, trilateral relations and issues of common interest.
Q: Will you share with us President Hu Jintao's schedule during the outreach session of the G8 Summit? What's China's position on the verdict of the Japanese Supreme Court on the compensation request by the Chinese laborers?
A: The Assistant Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai will brief the press on the G8 Summit outreach session here at 10:00 a.m. next Monday. G8 countries will have dialogue with developing countries during the session on June 8. Prior to that, leaders of the five developing countries will also hold meetings. Besides, President Hu Jintao will hold bilateral meetings with leaders of other countries during the session. Relevant arrangements are still under consultation.
President Hu Jintao will visit Sweden from June 8 to 10, which is the first visit by the Chinese head of state to Sweden since China and Sweden established diplomatic relations 57 years ago. During his visit, President Hu will meet with the King of Sweden, Speaker of the House and the Prime Minister, reviewing and summarizing the development of the bilateral ties and mapping out the future of the bilateral relations. President Hu will engage with people from various circles, attend a ceremony of the returning of the replica of the 18th century Swedish merchant ship "Gotheborg" from a China tour and deliver an important speech at a banquet hosted by Sweden-China Trade Committee. There will be cooperation agreements on environmental protection and other subjects to be signed during his visit.
As to your second question, the conscription of forced labor is a grave crime committed by the Japanese militarism on the Chinese people during its aggression to China, and is also a major issue between China and Japan left over from history. We have always requested the Japanese government to deal with this issue in real earnest and handle it properly. We hope Japan could take seriously the legitimate demand of the victimized Chinese laborers.
If there is no more question, thanks for your presence.