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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin’s Regular Press Conference on May 20, 2024

2024-05-20 23:28

Reuters: I noted two points made by the Philippine National Security Council Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya during today’s press conference. First, Malaya said there was a growing consensus within the Philippine government on the need to file a case against China over the destruction of coral reefs, including the harvesting of endangered giant clams, in the South China Sea. Second, Malaya also commented on the regulations released by China Coast Guard last week, saying that China had no authority over the high seas and the latest regulations went contrary to international law. What’s China’s comment?

Wang Wenbin: On your first question, I noted earlier media reports saying that according to some in the Philippines, large amounts of coral reefs surrounding Zhongye Dao are severely degraded, the damage is man-made, and the only suspect is China. Let me make it very clear, China has indisputable sovereignty over Nansha Qundao, including Zhongye Dao, and the adjacent waters. The Philippines illegally occupied China’s Zhongye Dao and has carried out frequent activities in the adjacent waters of Zhongye Dao. If any environmental degradation appears in those waters, it is the Philippines who needs to reflect on its behavior, instead of wrongly accusing China.

On your second question, the regulations are rolled out by China Coast Guard to standardize the administrative law-enforcement procedures of Coast Guard agencies and better uphold order at sea. It is consistent with universal practices. Individuals and entities have no need for concern as long as they have not done anything illicit.

Xinhua News Agency: Could you share with us more details about Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s visit to Tajikistan?

Wang Wenbin: At the invitation of Tajikistan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sirojiddin Muhriddin, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi paid an official visit to Tajikistan. During the visit, Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon and held talks with Minister of Foreign Affairs Muhriddin. The two foreign ministers signed cooperation documents between the two foreign ministries and jointly met the press.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi said during the meeting and talks that no matter how the international landscape may evolve, China will always be a trustworthy friend and partner for Tajikistan. China stands ready to work with Tajikistan to expand trade, unleash the potential in connectivity, promote cooperation in mineral resources, broaden cooperation in emerging areas, such as new energy and green transition, and help Tajikistan accelerate industrialization, upgrade socioeconomic development, embark on a successful path of development and rejuvenation and bring tangible benefits to the people of Tajikistan.

Tajikistan noted that China is its important strategic partner, and advancing its relations with China is a priority in its foreign policy. Tajikistan will, as always, firmly uphold the one-China principle, view Taiwan as an inalienable part of China’s territory, oppose “Taiwan independence” in any form and support the Chinese government’s effort to achieve national reunification.

Both sides are of the view that what China and Tajikistan have achieved together under the strategic guidance of President Xi Jinping and President Emomali Rahmon—establishing the comprehensive strategic partnership in the spirit of good-neighborliness and friendship, agreeing to, in line with the trend of the times, build a community for security, a community of development between China and Tajikistan, and, on that basis, a China-Tajikistan community with a shared future—is a vivid example of how neighbors can and should get along by embracing mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit. This is also a shining example of state-to-state relations. Looking to the future, the two sides need to focus on cooperation in the following areas. First, firmly support each other’s core interests. Second, continue to tap the great potential of mutually beneficial cooperation. Third, accelerate people-to-people and cultural exchanges. China welcomes Tajikistan’s 14-day visa-free policy for eligible Chinese citizens and looks forward to having more young people from Tajikistan to study in China. Fourth, firmly uphold regional security and stability and deepen counterterrorism cooperation. The two sides need to strengthen efforts to fight terrorism, separatism and extremism, step up border control, enhance exchange and consultation on efforts against foreign interference and jointly guard against “color revolution.” China supports the establishment of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Anti-Drug Center in Dushanbe. Fifth, maintain close multilateral coordination. The two sides need to strengthen the China-Central Asia mechanism and make it a success, bolster coordination within the UN, the SCO and other multilateral frameworks, practice true multilateralism, and advocate an equal and orderly multipolar world and universally beneficial and inclusive economic globalization. Tajikistan will fully support China’s work as the next rotating chair of the SCO.

China Daily: On May 17, UN Human Rights Council’s Special Rapporteur on the negative impact of the unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights Alena Douhan held a press briefing in Beijing on her visit to China and called on sanctioning parties to lift unilateral sanctions applied to China. What’s your comment?

Wang Wenbin: At China’s invitation, UN Human Rights Council’s Special Rapporteur on the negative impact of the unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights Alena Douhan visited China from May 6 to 17. She visited Beijing, Xinjiang and Shenzhen, and exchanged views with relevant government institutions, businesses, associations, and non-governmental organizations. On the final leg of her visit, she held a press briefing in Beijing on the visit. She stressed that unilateral sanctions must not be used as foreign policy tool and means of economic coercion, and relevant countries’ unilateral sanctions against China are illegal under international law and have a negative impact on human rights. These sanctioning countries should lift their unilateral sanctions against China.

Unilateral sanctions are diametrically opposed to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and the basic norms in international relations. Such sanctions seriously violate human rights and disrupt international cooperation in development. China firmly opposes it. We call on relevant countries to heed the just call from the international community, and lift all illicit unilateral sanctions at once. China is willing to step up communication with UN human rights mechanisms and other parties to jointly further enhance the world’s understanding of the illicit nature and danger of unilateral sanctions and strive to remove their negative impact on countries globally for the sound advancement of the international human rights cause.

Anadolu Agency: Taiwan’s new leader Lai Ching-te was inaugurated today. And in his first speech, he said China and Taiwan are not subordinate to each other and emphasized Taiwan has sovereignty. What’s China’s comments?

Wang Wenbin: I’d refer you to competent authorities on specific questions. Let me stress that “Taiwan independence” leads nowhere. No matter what banner or pretext the separatists use, “Taiwan independence” is doomed to failure.

Shenzhen TV: We noted that on May 16, the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Council of the League of Arab States at the Summit Level was held and the Arab states wrote the commitment to the one-China principle into the session’s resolution. What’s China’s comment?

Wang Wenbin: The Arab states wrote the commitment to the one-China principle into the session’s resolution. We highly appreciate it. This shows that the Arab states firmly uphold the UN Charter and basic norms in international relations and demonstrates once again that the one-China principle is the right thing to do and is where global opinion trends.

China and the Arab states are good friends and partners. China stands ready to work with the Arab states to firmly support each other on issues concerning respective core interests and major concerns, uphold fairness and justice, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation and elevate the relations between China and Arab states to a new level.

CCTV: For some time, some in the US have been spreading claims that distort UNGA Resolution 2758, saying that the Resolution “did not make a determination on the status of Taiwan...and does not preclude Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the UN system.” What is your comment?

Wang Wenbin: Taiwan is not a country. It has been an inalienable part of China’s territory since ancient times. The international community has long reached the conclusion on this. It is a vital component of the post-WWII international order. The 1943 Cairo Declaration explicitly demands that “all the territories Japan has stolen from the Chinese, such as Manchuria, Formosa, and the Pescadores, shall be restored” to China. The 1945 Potsdam Proclamation further stipulates that the “terms of the Cairo Declaration shall be carried out.” Japan in both the 1945 Japanese Instrument of Surrender and the 1972 China-Japan Joint Communiqué pledged to observe the above-mentioned term of the Potsdam Proclamation. Be it in legal or factual terms, Taiwan is an inalienable part of China.

UNGA Resolution 2758 settled the question of who shall represent the whole of China, that is, the government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China, including Taiwan, at the UN. The Resolution made it clear that there is but one China in the world and Taiwan is part of China and a non-sovereign entity. It reaffirmed the one-China principle. Over the past half a century and more since the adoption of the Resolution, UN secretaries-general and their spokespersons, in their Taiwan-related remarks, have clearly stated the UN is guided by UNGA Resolution 2758 and committed to the one-China principle. The official legal opinions of the Office of Legal Affairs of the UN Secretariat made it pretty clear that Taiwan is “an integral part” of China and that “the United Nations considers ‘Taiwan’ as a province of China with no separate status.” The number of countries that have established diplomatic relations with China on the basis of the one-China principle has jumped from over 60 to 183. This clearly demonstrates that the one-China principle is not only a prevailing international consensus, but also a basic norm of international relations.

Some in the US claim that UNGA Resolution 2758 “did not make a determination on the status of Taiwan” and “does not preclude Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the UN system.” This is a lie. They are trying to reopen the closed case that Taiwan is part of China—a matter already settled by the international community once and for all—to deny UNGA Resolution 2758 and the one-China principle. This move that turns back the wheel of history is a challenge to not only China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, but also international justice and conscience and the post-WWII international order. This is extremely preposterous and dangerous.

China will and must achieve reunification. No one or force can hold it back. Our message to some in the US: The trend of the world is surging forward. Those who follow the trend will prosper; those who go against it will perish. Those who challenge the one-China principle will be swept away by the trend of the times; those who turn back the wheel of history will be run over by it. 

AFP: What is the Chinese government’s reaction to the death of the Iranian President?

Wang Wenbin: President Xi Jinping has sent a message of condolences to Iran’s First Vice-President Mohammad Mokhber. On behalf of the Chinese government and people, President Xi expressed deep condolences over the passing of President Ebrahim Raisi in the helicopter accident and heartfelt sympathies to First Vice-President Mokhber, President Raisi’s family and the government and people of Iran. President Xi noted that after taking office, President Raisi made important contribution to ensuring Iran’s security and stability and promoting national development and prosperity, and made strong efforts to consolidate and advance Iran’s comprehensive strategic partnership with China. The unfortunate passing of President Raisi is a profound loss to the Iranian people, and the Chinese people have lost a cherished friend. The Chinese government and people deeply value the traditional friendship between our two countries and believe that with the concerted effort of both sides, the China-Iran comprehensive strategic partnership will continue to go from strength to strength.

China also expresses deep condolences over the unfortunate passing of Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and heartfelt sympathies to his family.

In the wake of the accident, China closely followed the situation and expressed readiness to provide all necessary support and assistance to Iran. China firmly supports the Iranian government and people in upholding independence, stability and development and stands ready to work with Iran to further deepen the China-Iran comprehensive strategic partnership.

CCTV: At recent events for friendly exchanges, leaders from various countries and international organizations and people from various social sectors who are friendly towards China have openly stated their commitment to the one-China principle, support for China’s effort to uphold sovereignty and territorial integrity, and opposition to “Taiwan independence” separatism and external interference in China’s internal affairs. What’s China’s comment?

Wang Wenbin: Over the past few days, leaders and political parties from countries that have diplomatic relations with China, people from various sectors friendly towards China and heads of major international organizations attended friendly exchange activities organized by China to review the journey of establishing diplomatic ties with China and achievements of cooperation with China. They all speak with a strong voice for the just commitment to the one-China principle and demonstrated a firm stance against “Taiwan independence” separatism and external interference in the Taiwan question.

The one-China principle is a prevailing consensus in the international community, a basic norm governing international relations and also the political foundation and premise for China to develop relations with countries in the world. Facts prove once and again that upholding the one-China principle is a universal consensus and is where global opinion trends and the arc of history bends. The overwhelming majority of countries and international and regional organizations in the world stand firmly with the Chinese government and people and support China’s just cause of opposing “Taiwan independence” and promoting reunification.

I want to stress that there is but one China in the world. Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s territory. The government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China. No matter what political changes may take place in Taiwan, it cannot change the historical and legal fact that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one and the same China, the world’s abiding commitment to the one-China principle, and still less the historical trend that China will and must achieve reunification.

The political manipulation and self-serving stunts on the Taiwan question by certain politicians in a handful of countries grossly interfere in China’s internal affairs and violate the one-China principle. China strongly condemns this and will take all necessary measures to firmly uphold national sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Nothing shall hold back the trend of history. The pursuit of “Taiwan independence” is a dead end. External interference in China’s internal affairs and encouragement and support for “Taiwan independence” will lead nowhere. Using Taiwan to contain China is doomed to failure. The Chinese people’s just cause of opposing “Taiwan independence” separatism and striving for national reunification will enjoy wider and wider understanding and support from the international community. The day will come when China will be fully reunified.

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