Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying held a press conference on February 7, 2013.
Hua Chunying started the press conference with the following announcement:
At the invitation of President Kanayo F. Nwanze of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Vice President and Foreign Minister Didier Burkhalter of the Swiss Confederation and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák of Slovakia, Vice Premier of the State Council Hui Liangyu will attend IFAD's 36th session of the Governing Council in Rome, Italy and pay official visits to Slovakia and Switzerland from February 12 to 20. During his stay in Rome, Vice Premier Hui Liangyu will attend a round-table conference on agriculture cooperation among China and six southern European countries including Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus and Malta.
Q: Please brief us on the meeting between Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad.
A: Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi met with visiting Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Mekdad in Beijing on February 6. The two sides exchanged views on the situation in Syria.
Yang said that the situation in Syria is now in a crucial stage. Promotion for an early political resolution is the urgent task. Relevant parties in Syria should earnestly implement the communiqué of Geneva foreign ministers' meeting of the Action Group on Syria and determine practical and operable steps for an early political dialogue and transition. All parties should truly respect the reasonable appeals and aspirations of the Syrian people and deal with relevant issues concerning the political transition in a flexible and pragmatic manner for a resolution that fully reflects the aspirations of the Syrian people and widely acceptable to all parties. All parties should continue to support UN-AL Joint Special Representative on the Syrian issue Lakhdar Brahimi's mediation. Yang stressed that China is objective and impartial on the Syrian issue, and is positive and open to any resolution that is widely acceptable to all parties in Syria.
Mekdad introduced the current situation in Syria and the phased plan to resolve the Syrian issue proposed by the Syrian government not long ago. He said that the Syrian government is ready to push forward the implementation of the plan in the spirit of the communiqué of Geneva foreign ministers' meeting of the Action Group on Syria, maintain cooperation with Joint Special Representative Brahimi and ensure the delivery of humanitarian assistance to the whole territory of Syria.
Q: Some Japanese media said that China's recent assertiveness affected China-Japan relations and escalated the tension in the region. What is China's comment?
A: China remains committed to the policy of developing China-Japan relations on the basis of the principles and spirit of the four political documents between the two countries. Meanwhile, China stands firm on safeguarding national territorial sovereignty. The current problem is not China being assertive, but Japan's unilateral provocative actions on the Diaoyu Islands issue, and repeatedly sending vessels and aircrafts to illegally enter waters and airspace of the Diaoyu Islands which undermine China's territorial sovereignty. Recently, the Japanese side has been deliberately hyping crisis and creating tension to defame China, which runs counter to the efforts for improvement of bilateral relations. China always stands for proper management and resolution of relevant issues through dialogue and consultation. We hope that the Japanese side could face up to the history and reality and work with China to make concrete efforts to this end.
Q: When will the Chinese company take over the management of Parkistan's Gwadar port? India's Defence Minister has expressed concerns over this. What is China's comment?
A: Please consult relevant company for your specific question. I would like to point out that China and Parkistan are friendly neighbours. Chinese companies have long been actively participating in Pakistan's foreign cooperation projects in all fields. China supports cooperation that are conducive to China-Pakistan friendship as well as the development and prosperity of Pakistan.
Q: US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta recently said it's important that China recognizes that the US, Japan, the ROK and other regional countries are going to do everything they have to do to promote security and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. What is China's comment?
A: China has always been a firm defender and promoter of peace, stability and development in the Asia-Pacific. We hope relevant parties will make joint efforts with China to safeguard peace and stability in the region.