Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying held a press conference on January 9, 2014.
Q: It is learned that the Second International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria will soon be held. Will China attend it? Please give us more details.
A: Ambassador Wu Sike, China's Special Envoy on Middle East Issues will attend the Second International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria on January 15 in Kuwait upon invitation.
China follows closely the humanitarian situation in Syria, supports the international community in upholding the principle of neutrality and justice and has provided more humanitarian assistance for Syria in accordance with the UN guiding principles on humanitarian assistance. China has provided multiple batches of humanitarian aid through various channels for the Syrian people and overseas Syrian refugees. We will continue to offer help as our capacity allows.
We are of the view that the fundamental approach to improve the humanitarian situation in Syria is to pull together to accelerate the process of solving the Syrian issue through political means.
Q: It is reported that the measures passed by Hainan province on the implementation of the Fisheries Law of the People's Republic of China came into effect on January 1. The measures require foreign fishing boats to get permission from competent Chinese authorities before entering waters under the jurisdiction of Hainan for fishery activities. Which part of waters do the measures apply to?
A: China is a maritime state. It is completely normal and routine for coastal provinces of China to draw up local regulations in accordance with China's national laws to conserve, utilize and manage marine biological resources.
To my knowledge, Hainan province enacted the measures on the implementation of the Fisheries Law of the People's Republic of China in 1993, made the first amendment in 2008 and the second this time. The aim is to protect, proliferate, develop and make rational use of fishery resources, safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of producers of the fishery industry, ensure the quality and safety of aquatic products, promote the sustainable and sound development of the fishery industry and protect fishery resources and the ecological environment.
You may find the answer to your specific question in the measures and, if interested, you can read closely the Fisheries Law of the People's Republic of China and all previous editions of the measures.
Q: Regarding China's recent mediation on the issue of South Sudan, some foreign media say that China is active in promoting peace talks between the warring parties of South Sudan only because of its enormous oil interests there. It does not accord with China's long-standing principle of non-interference in others' internal affairs. What is China's comment?
A: Non-interference in others' internal affairs is an important part of the Five Principles of Peaceful Co-existence, which has always been advocated and upheld by China. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council and a responsible major country, China stays committed to safeguarding world peace and stability and has played a positive and constructive role in promoting peace, security and development of Africa and other regions.
Following the sudden change in the situation in South Sudan, China has been actively encouraging the warring parties to immediately realize a ceasefire and cessation of violence and solve differences through negotiations. This is the embodiment of China's long-standing policy and position, which meets the fundamental interests of people of South Sudan, contributes to peace and security of Africa and wins universal applause from not only the warring parties of South Sudan but also the international community.
I also want to point out that it serves the interests of local people for China to carry out cooperation with relevant countries in energy and other fields and help them develop economy and improve people's well-being. China will continue to make contributions to the promotion of peace, security and development of African countries as its capacity allows.
Q: The 10th Parliamentary Election in Bangladesh has concluded. What is China's comment on the situation there?
A: We have noted that the Parliamentary Election in Bangladesh concluded on January 5. As a friend and neighbor of Bangladesh, China follows the situation there and hopes that political forces there could realize political stability, social tranquility and economic growth through dialogue and consultation with the long-term and fundamental interests of the country in mind.
Q: It is reported that the Japanese government has decided to "nationalize" 280 uninhabited islands. What is China's comment?
A: We have noted relevant reports and will continue to follow the developments. Japan's actions at sea should be in conformity with international law and do no harm to the interests of other countries and the international community.
Q: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly said in a TV program on January 8 that even though his visit to the Yasukuni Shrine would spark criticism, he would continue to do what he should as a Prime Minister. Reports say that what Abe said indicates that he will not drop the idea of visiting the Yasukuni Shrine in the future. What is China's comment?
A: China has repeatedly expressed its solemn position on Prime Minister Abe's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine. The Japanese leader's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine is, in nature, an attempt to whitewash the history of aggression and colonialism by militarist Japan, overturn the just trial of Japanese militarism by the international community and challenge the outcome of WWII and the post-war international order. What Abe has done has shut the door on dialogue with the Chinese side. What he said shows that he does not have even the slightest interest in improving relations with China and other Asian neighbors.
To face up to history, conform to the trend of the time, admit, reflect on and correct mistakes is what the Japanese leader should do. If the Japanese leader refuses to realize his errors and holds on to the course of confrontation and provocation, he is bound to go to a dead end.
Q: The Chinese Embassy in Spain has reportedly demanded an apology from a Spanish TV for a program insulting China. Is that an official demand from the Chinese side? Do you have any additional comment?
A: Spain is a good friend and cooperative partner of China in the EU. Thanks to the concerted efforts of China and Spain, friendly cooperation between the two countries has constantly expanded and deepened over recent years, which is beneficial to both sides. There are about 180,000 Chinese nationals living in Spain. They make efforts to integrate into the local society and contribute positively to the economic and social development of Spain. It is regrettable that a program insulting China was broadcast by a Spanish TV when China and Spain are in such a good relationship. The Chinese Embassy in Spain has made clear its position on this issue. The relevant Spanish TV should face up to its mistake, and give a sincere response to the legitimate requirements of the public, take effective measures to remove the negative impact, draw lessons from the issue and prevent the recurrence of similar incidents.
Q: The Japanese side confirmed that China has canceled visits by three delegations to Japan scheduled for January. The Chief Cabinet Secretary of Japan expressed regret at that. Is it a countermeasure adopted by the Chinese side in response to Abe's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine?
A: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan, in total disregard of the solemn representations and the strong opposition of the Chinese side, insisted on paying homage to the Yasukuni Shrine where Class-A war criminals of WWII are honored. He has made one mistake after another, challenged time and again the bottom line of China-Japan relations, grossly violated the principle and spirit of the four political documents between China and Japan and undermined the political foundation of bilateral relations. His erroneous actions cannot but have an impact on the exchanges and cooperation between China and Japan. The Japanese side must bear the responsibility for all the serious consequences arising therefrom. We hope that the Japanese leader could face up to and reflect on the history of aggression, admit mistakes and change course.