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“China will never become another America”: FM
March 8, 2016, 5:23 am

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi listens to questions from a journalist at a press conference on the sidelines of the fourth session of China's 12th National People's Congress in Beijing, capital of China, March 8, 2016 [Xinhua]

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi listens to questions from a journalist at a press conference on the sidelines of the fourth session of China’s 12th National People’s Congress in Beijing, capital of China, March 8, 2016 [Xinhua]

China will better protect its growing interests overseas, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Tuesday at a press conference in Beijing.

Wang touched on hotspots like North Korean sanctions, US’ interference in the South China Sea, ties with ally Russia, China’s growing involvement in global affairs and crises, in a lengthy interaction with the press.

“China is trying to play a bigger role in existing international order and system,” Wang said, adding that it will not seek global hegemony.

“China will never become another America. China has no intention to supercede or lead others,” Wang stressed.

Meanwhile, China’s friendship with North Korea will not accommodate its nuclear pursuits, Wang told reporters.

“China is responsible, capable of implementing UN resolution on DPRK nuclear issue. UN resolution on North Korea should be implemented in its entirety, which is not only about sanctions,” Wang noted.

Wang also warned that “obsession with sanctions” against Pyongyang is “irresponsible” and not conducive to peace in Korean peninsula.

The new sanctions would require UN member states to conduct mandatory inspections of all cargo passing through their territory to or from North Korea to look for illicit goods. Previously states were only required to do this if they had reasonable grounds to believe there was illicit cargo.

China and the United States had differed on how strongly to respond to Pyongyang’s most recent test, with Washington urging harsh punitive measures and Beijing emphasizing dialogue and milder U.N. steps confined to non-proliferation.

The Chinese Foreign Minister in a press conference on the sidelines of the national legislature annual session, also hit out at US interference in the South China Sea, saying “Freedom of navigation does not imply doing whatever you want.”

“Thanks to joint efforts made by China and other countries in the region, the South China Sea remains among the world’s safest and freest sail lanes. Any attempts to disturb the South China Sea and destabilize Asia would not be allowed by China and most other countries in the region,” he said.

He warned the US against “muddying the waters” that could “plunge Asia into chaos”.

China has offered to set up two hotlines at the earliest to deal with maritime emergencies, joint rescues, he noted.

He also reiterated that China disagrees with the arbitration filed by the Philippines at the UN tribunal at the Hague concerning the legality of mainland China’s claims in the South China Sea.

“Philippines’ stubbornness on the South China Sea dispute is the result of behind-the-scene instigation, political maneuvering,” Wang alleged.

The Foreign Minister also stated that Beijing will not be an onlooker in the Middle East, but will play a more active role without interfering in internal affairs of nations in the region.

“China’s policy on the Middle East is to facilitate peace talks with an objective and impartial attitude, instead of seeking a sphere of influence or proxies,” the Foreign Minister said in a veiled criticism of US policies.

“China is honest and straightforward in such facilitation, which brings about unique strength,” Wang said.

Wang also praised “mature and stable” ties with its BRICS partner Russia.

“China-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination is built on the solid foundation of mutual support and mutual trust, and the two sides have a strong desire to strengthen win-win cooperation,” said Wang.



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