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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on December 24, 2012


Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying held a press conference on December 24, 2012.

Q: It is reported that the South Sudanese army shot down a UN peacekeeping helicopter by mistake on December 21, killing all four crew on board. What is China's comment? Are Chinese peacekeepers among the victims?

A: China laments the tragedy and expresses condolences to the bereaved families. It has been verified that there are no Chinese peacekeepers among the victims. The UN Security Council has consulted on this incident and issued a president's press statement. China urges parties concerned to carry out immediate and thorough investigation on this incident as required by the Security Council, take necessary steps to avoid the repetition of similar incidents and ensure the safety of peacekeepers in their fulfillment of mandate.

Q: US President Barack Obama recently nominated John Kerry, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, as Secretary of State. What is China's comment?

A: We congratulate Senator Kerry on being nominated as the new US Secretary of State. China stands ready to work together with the US side to push forward the development of China-US cooperative partnership and actively explore ways to build the new type of relations between China and the US as two major countries.

Q: First, India and ASEAN reportedly held a summit the other day. What is China's attitude toward the development of India-ASEAN relations? Second, the Vietnamese Prime Minister recently urged India to play a bigger role on the South China Sea issue. What is China's comment?

A: On your first question, both India and ASEAN are China's important partners as well as country and organization with important influence in the region. We hope that the cooperation between India and ASEAN will be conducive to regional peace, stability and development.

On your second question, we have noted the Indian side's statement on this issue. We hope that in the spirit of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), all parties can make concrete efforts for the maintenance of peace and stability in the South China Sea.

Q: First, it is reported that the Japanese Coast Guard decided to set up a special force to confront Chinese ships engaging in rights-protection patrols in waters off the Diaoyu Islands. What is China's comment? Second, new Japanese Ambassador to China Masato Kitera will soon assume office. What is China's expectation of him?

A: On your first question, China's position on the Diaoyu Islands issue is clear and consistent. China is resolute and determined in defending national territorial sovereignty. Meanwhile, we always maintain that the territorial dispute should be solved through dialogue and negotiation and hope the Japanese side would show sincerity and make efforts for the appropriate settlement of the current situation.

On your second question, we have noted relevant remarks made by the new Japanese Ambassador to China. The long-term, sound and stable development of China-Japan relations meets the fundamental interests of both countries and contributes to the peaceful development of the region. We hope that the new Japanese Ambassador to China, after taking office, could be actively committed to the improvement of China-Japan relations, make extensive contact with all walks of life in China for a better understanding and play an active role in appropriately addressing the difficulties and problems in the current China-Japan relations.

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