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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei's Regular Press Conference on May 28, 2013

2013/05/29

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei held a press conference on May 28, 2013.

Q: Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said yesterday that the remarks made by the Chinese premier after touring the site of the Potsdam Conference in Germany ignored history. Japan would never accept it if the remarks were based on China's claim over the Diaoyu Islands. What is China's response?

A: Foreign Minister Wang Yi has stated China's solemn position in response to what the Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary said. I would like to reiterate that in modern times, the Japanese militarism illegally occupied and stole Chinese territories, including Taiwan and its affiliated islands, by waging aggressive wars against China. These historical facts cannot be denied. Japan accepted the Potsdam Proclamation and announced its unconditional surrender in 1945. Article 8 of the Potsdam Proclamation states explicitly that "the terms of the Cairo Declaration shall be carried out". The Cairo Declaration, in turn, makes it even clearer that all the territories Japan had stolen from China shall be restored to China. The China-Japan Joint Statement signed in 1972 when the two countries normalized their relations also put down in black and white that "Japan firmly maintains its stand under Article 8 of the Potsdam Proclamation." These are clear historical facts. We urge the Japanese side to face history squarely, clarify and correct relevant statements and never again make remarks that lack common sense.

Q: Australian media reported that Chinese hackers had recently stolen secret blueprints, including the floor plan, of the headquarters of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO). What is China's comment?

A: China takes the issue of cyber security seriously and resolutely opposes hacker attack in all forms. We have repeatedly said that cyber security is an international thorny issue and hacker attack is a common challenge facing the whole world. Technically, it is very difficult to trace the source and pinpoint relevant hacker. I am wondering how can relevant reports be so sure about it.

Given that cyber security is a common issue facing the international community, we need to sit down for clam and useful discussions and work out relevant rules to safeguard a peaceful, secure, open and cooperative cyber space. Groundless accusations do not help solve the issue.

Q: The Vietnamese Foreign Ministry reportedly said that Chinese vessels rammed Vietnamese fishing boats in Vietnam's exclusive economic zone the other day. Please confirm. What is China's response?

A: The Vietnamese side's accusation against China is completely inconsistent with facts. The Vietnamese fishing boats' entry into waters off China's Xisha Islands for illegal fishing seriously infringed upon China's sovereignty and violated Chinese laws. The competent Chinese authorities are justified to take regular law-enforcement measures. China urges the Vietnamese side to take effective steps, strengthen education and management of its fishermen and stop illegal fishing

Q: US National Security Advisor Thomas Donilon had reportedly expressed the hope of deepening military cooperation with China during his visit here. What is China's comment?

A: Military-to-military relations are an important part of China-US relations. While implementing the consensus by leaders of the two countries and building a new type of major-country relations, we stand ready to strengthen coordination and communication, enhance mutual trust, and accommodate each other's core concerns in order to develop our relations including military-to-military ties.

Q: Toru Hashimoto, co-leader of the Japan Restoration Party and Mayor of the Osaka City, recently refused again to admit Japan's forced recruitment of "comfort women". What is China's comment?

A: We have long ago made clear our solemn position on and expressed strong indignation at the remarks by some Japanese politicians. Forced recruitment of "comfort women" is a heinous crime committed by the Japanese militarism during the Second World War and a major human rights issue concerning the dignity of the victims. We ask the Japanese side to take concrete steps, face up to and reflect on history, and take a responsible attitude to win the trust of its Asian neighbours and the international community.

Q: How do you view Premier Li Keqiang's visits to Europe?

A: Premier Li Keqiang returned to Beijing this morning after his successful visits to Germany and Switzerland.

Premier Li Keqiang's visits to Switzerland and Germany fully underscore the high importance China attaches to the development of relations with Switzerland, Germany and Europe at large. We maintain that a united, prosperous and strong Europe serves the interests of China, Europe and the world. We will follow through on the achievements of Premier Li Keqiang's visits and push forward China-EU mutually beneficial cooperation across the board to the benefit of the two peoples.

Q: The Philippines said that Chinese government ships recently stepped up patrol in waters off the Ren'ai Reef in the South China Sea, adding that these Chinese vessels posed a threat to the security of the region. What is China's comment?

A: I would like to point out that the Ren'ai Reef is part of the Nansha Islands. China has indisputable sovereignty over the Nansha Islands and its surrounding waters. Chinese government ships are justified to carry out regular patrol in relevant waters. We ask relevant country to implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) in a comprehensive and earnest manner and refrain from doing things that complicate and aggravate the situation and affect peace and stability in the South China Sea.

Q: What is China's comment on the EU's announcement to lift arms embargo against the Syrian opposition?

A: We believe that the international community's actions on the Syrian issue should help cease fire and stop violence in Syria, and contribute to the political settlement of the Syrian issue as well as peace and stability of the Middle East.

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