Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu's Regular Press Conference on May 24, 2011


On the afternoon of May 24, 2011, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu held a regular press conference.

Jiang Yu started the press conference with the following announcement:

Special Envoy of President Hu Jintao and Minister of Railways Sheng Guangzu will attend the inauguration ceremony of Nigerian President in Abuja on May 29 upon invitation.

Q: The EU recently decided to include Syrian President Bashar and other senior officials in its sanction list. What is China's comment?

A: Syria is a country of major influence in the Middle East Region. China believes that when it comes to properly handling the current Syrian situation, it is the correct direction and major approach to resolve the internal differences through political dialogue and maintain its national stability as well as the overall stability and security of the Middle East.

The future of Syria should be independently decided by the Syrian people themselves free from external interference. We hope the international community continues to play a constructive role in this regard.

Q: It is reported that DPRK leader Kim Jong-il is visiting China. Would you please confirm?

A: China and the DPRK have always maintained exchange of high-level visits. The competent authority of China will release relevant information in due course.

Q: Some countries have recently changed their stand on the Libyan opposition, with Russia, Turkey and other countries coming into contact with the Libyan Transitional National Council. Does China have the similar plan? Separately, how does China comment on US President Obama's recent speech on Middle East policy?

A: China's position on the Libyan issue is clear. We respect the choice of the Libyan people and support resolving the current crisis through dialogue and other political means. China hopes to see an early restoration of stability in Libya and the advancement of China-Libya friendship.

On your second question, China has noted relevant speech. We believe it is imperative for West Asia and North Africa to restore regional stability as soon as possible and resolve disputes through negotiation and other peaceful means. We hope the international community makes more efforts to encourage an early resumption of peace talks between Palestine and Israel, advance the Middle East peace process and play a positive and constructive role in achieving regional peace and stability.

Q: The French Government said that China expressed support for French Finance Minister Lagarde as a candidate for IMF chief. Would you please confirm?

A: Head of the competent authority of China responded to the issue of candidacy for IMF chief last week. Please refer your specific follow-up questions to the competent authority.

Q: You mentioned that China hopes to push for an early resumption of talks between Palestine and Israel. What does China think is the basis of the resumption?

A: China always upholds that Israel should withdraw from the Arabian territory occupied after the third Middle East War in 1967 in light of relevant UN resolutions. Palestine and Israel should resolve border and other issues appropriately through peaceful negotiations, in a bid to realize a just settlement of the Palestine issue as well as the peaceful co-existence of Palestine and Israel.

Q: The Chinese Government has hailed the killing of Bin Laden as an important event and positive development in the international counter-terrorism campaign. However, in the China-Pakistan Joint Statement, China calls for the respect for independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Pakistan. Do the positions contradict each other?

A: Our position on the counter-terrorism issue is clear and consistent. Pakistan, as an important country in South Asia, has made great contribution to international counter-terrorism campaign, thus deserving more understanding and support from the international community. The stability and development of Pakistan have a direct bearing on the peace and stability of South Asia. We support the international community's efforts to enhance cooperation in counter-terrorism and also believe that every country's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity should be respected in real earnest.

Q:It is reported that China has confirmed to the outside that the DPRK leader is visiting China with an aim to learn from China's economic development. Can you confirm? Separately, Pakistani Defense Minister said that his country hoped China would establish a naval base in its Gwadar port. How do you respond?

A: We arrange matters related to foreign leaders' visits to China in keeping with usual practices and out of respect for the visiting country.

China and the DPRK are friendly neighbors. It is the unswerving policy of China's Party and Government to continue to consolidate and develop China-DPRK good-neighborliness, friendship and cooperation. We would like to work with the DPRK to promote sustained, healthy and long-term development of bilateral relations, with a view to delivering benefits to the two countries and peoples and safeguarding regional peace and stability.

China and Pakistan are traditional friendly neighbors with extensive cooperation across the board. I haven't heard about the specific cooperation project you mentioned.

China has long provided assistance to Pakistan within its capacity to help the latter improve people's welfare and promote economic and social development, and will continue to do so in the future.

Q: Does China consider giving more aid to the DPRK?

A: Over the years, China has provided some assistance to the DPRK within its capacity to help the DPRK improve people's well-being and develop economy. We also support international aid projects in the DPRK.

Q: Which Chinese officials will accompany President Hu Jintao on his visit to St. Petersburg, Russia in June?

A: As for the SCO Summit and other arrangements, we will release information in due course as is the usual practice. We will provide more details at the press briefing, including the accompanying Chinese officials.

Q: China said no Chinese national was kidnapped in yesterday's attacks on a Pakistani military base, but Pakistan confirmed 11 Chinese nationals were relocated. Could you shed light on this?

A: A military base in southern Pakistan was under attack lately. According to my knowledge, no Chinese national was kidnapped in the incident. The Chinese you refer to are technical personnel of relevant company, who have been safely relocated.

Q: Iranian Foreign Minister Salehi reportedly invited Chinese experts to visit its nuclear facilities. How do you comment?

A: Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi held talks with visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Salehi. The two sides exchanged views on how to deepen bilateral relations, the Iranian nuclear issue as well as international and regional issues of common interest. Chinese leader will meet with him this afternoon.

We will carefully study Iran's invitation of Chinese experts to visit its nuclear facilities. China believes dialogue and negotiations are the correct channel to seek a comprehensive, long-term and proper settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue. We hope Iran and the six countries will hold a new round of dialogue as soon as possible and encourage it to step up cooperation with the IAEA.