Q: The Myanmar military said that although China follows a policy of not interfering in Myanmar's domestic affairs, its local authorities are associated with the Kokang forces. How does China respond to this and how does China view the current situation in northern Myanmar? Has the border between the two countries been closed yet?
A: China is committed to non-interference in other countries' domestic affairs, consistently respects the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Myanmar and forbids any organization and individual conducting activities that undermine China-Myanmar relations or stability of the border area on the Chinese territory. Since the break-out of local clashes in northern Myanmar, the Chinese side has been acting in accordance with aforementioned principles and keeping close contact with the Myanmar side. What China has done wins full recognition from the Myanmar side.
China has been monitoring closely the situation in northern Myanmar. What happens there bears on the stability of China-Myanmar border area. China once again urges parties concerned to exercise restraint, avoid escalation of tension, cool down the situation as quickly as possible and prevent it from undermining the security order of the border area. China also hopes that the Myanmar side can take all necessary steps to safeguard the security of Chinese institutions and personnel in Myanmar.
With regard to those Myanmar residents who crossed the border into China out of own security concerns, China has given and will continue to give them necessary assistance and proper settlement following the humanitarian spirit. The Chinese side has advised the Myanmar side to strengthen regulation of the border area. Given the current situation in the China-Myanmar border area, relevant departments and local authorities of China have stepped up control of the border area but have not closed the border.
Q: Negotiations on a comprehensive solution to the Iranian nuclear issue were held in Geneva days ago. Reports said that some progress was made, but there was still a long way to go to seal a final deal. The next round of negotiations will be held in early March. Can you give us more details on this round of negotiations? How does China perceive the prospect of the nuclear negotiations?
A: On February 22, negotiations on a comprehensive solution to the Iranian nuclear issue were held in a serious and pragmatic manner amid sound atmosphere. All parties had substantive discussions on major focal issues of a comprehensive deal. Some progress was made, but differences remain to be bridged.
A new round of negotiations will be convened very soon. China is ready to work with all parties and continue to play a constructive role in moving along the talks and negotiations. We hope that parties concerned can consolidate their confidence, work towards the same direction so that a comprehensive agreement that is mutually beneficial and win-win to all can be reached at an early date.
Q: Former President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives has been arrested and is likely to be put on trial. Several countries have expressed concerns on whether or not he will be given a fair trial. What is China's view on the situation there? Has China been in any contact with the Maldivian side?
A: The issue you asked is the domestic matter of the Maldives. China upholds the principle of non-interference in other countries' domestic affairs. We believe the Maldivian side can deal with its domestic affairs properly.
Q: Duke of Cambridge Prince William will visit China in early March. Can you brief us on the arrangements of his visit? What is China's expectation for this visit?
A: At the invitation of the Chinese People's Institute of Foreign Affairs, Duke of Cambridge Prince William will visit Beijing, Shanghai and Yunnan from March 1 to 4. Both sides are in communication on the specific arrangements. We hope that through the Duke of Cambridge's visit, the royal family and other sectors in Britain can know China better, the friendship between the two peoples can be deepened, and bilateral relations between China and the UK can be elevated with new achievements in the new year.
Q: Next month is the annual UN human rights meeting in Geneva. Do you have any details on the Chinese delegation? Who will be the chief of the delegation?
A: I need to check on the specifics. China takes an active role in the UN human rights cause, and sends delegations to take part in the meeting every year. China is willing to engage in discussions and exchanges on human rights issue with all countries on the basis of mutual respect and equality to jointly move forward the international cause of human rights.
Q: On February 24, foreign ministers of Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine met in Paris, highlighting the need for all sides to fully implement the new Minsk agreement. What is China's response to that?
A: China always believes that dialogue and consultation provides the only solution to the Ukrainian issue. We hope parties concerned can fully implement each and every consensus reached in Minsk on February 12, consolidate the hard-earned ceasefire, implement the plan to withdraw heavy weapons as quickly as possible, and push forward the process of politically resolving the Ukrainian crisis so that peace and tranquility can be restored to Ukraine at an early date.
Q: Reports said that US and UK intelligence agencies embedded spying software into the computer system of a Dutch SIM card maker which produced SIM cards for some Chinese mobile phone companies. What's China's comment on this?
A: We have noted relevant reports, and are deeply concerned about them. The Chinese government firmly opposes cyber-surveillance activities conducted through ways like embedding spying software and setting up back-doors when information technology superiority is taken advantage of and convenience gained from supplying information technology products is misused. Such activities will not only harm the consumers' interests, but also shake the users' confidence in the products of relevant enterprises. We hope relevant parties can respect the consumers' interests and take effective measures to prevent such cases from happening again.
Q: A panel of experts met today to discuss what Japan's prime minister should say in a statement marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. What is China's comment on that?
A: I have not seen the report you mentioned. We hope that in this year of special significance, Japan can properly recognize and reflect upon history, win trust from its Asian neighbors and the international community so as to jointly safeguard peace and development of the region and the world.
Q: Regarding what Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said at the open debate of the UN Security Council, Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga claimed that Japan has contributed to world peace and prosperity based on deep remorse regarding the World War II. What is your response to that?
A: A: On February 23, as president of the UN Security Council, Foreign Minister Wang Yi chaired the open debate under the theme of "Maintaining International Peace and Security" at the UN Headquarters in New York, with the overall benefits of the people in every country and peace and future of all mankind in mind. The purpose is to look forward into the future by taking history as a mirror. China is a major country with a broad mind. We will not use this meeting to target anyone. It is also not necessary for us to do so.
After the press conference, the following question was raised: Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said on February 24 that the construction of a mega-dam in the country's southwestern region would not be started until 2018. In response to the news that some western environmental activist was deported by the Cambodian government, Hun Sen said that foreigners should not give advice to Cambodia on forest conservation or the construction of dams. Is China aware of the specifics? How does China comment on this?
Hong Lei said that we have noted such report. Companies from the two countries have been studying relevant cooperation on hydro-electricity. The Chinese government supports companies in carrying out mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation, promoting the social and economic development of Cambodia and bringing benefits to the Cambodian people. We also make it a requirement that relevant projects should meet the laws and regulations in Cambodia on environmental protection.