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Foreign Ministry Spokesman Liu Jianchao's Press Conference on 17 March 2005

On the afternoon of March 17, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Liu Jianchao held a regular press conference.

Liu: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I'd like to begin with an announcement

At the invitation of Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing , the Foreign Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Oluyemi Adeniji will pay a working visit to China from March 23 to 27.

Now, I'd like to take up your questions.

Q: G20 will hold a meeting in New Delhi in India, in the hope of reaching a consensus on reduction of farm subsidies given by developed countries. What issues of concern will China put forward at the meeting?

A: As the president country of G20 this year, China will continue to follow the principle of G20 and promote the discussion among the international community on the major international economic issues. We hope that the relevant meetings of G20 this year can yield pragmatic fruits, and become an arena in which all members can freely have their say so as to enhance the mutual understanding and trust, further deepen the international economic cooperation and promote the establishment of a just and rational new international economic order.

Q: It's reported that Vice President Zeng Qinghong discussed the issue of World Bank with his US counterpart Dick Cheney through telephone. Did China and the US reach an agreement on the nomination of Paul Wolfowitz as the next head of the World Bank? What's China's stance on the nomination?

A: Last night, Vice President Zeng Qinghong exchanged views with the US Vice President Dick Cheney on issues related to the World Bank as well as the candidates for the new president of World Bank. The World Bank, as the most important international organization for development assistance, has done a lot of work in the field of multilateral development assistance, and played a positive role in promoting the global development. We hope the new president of the World Bank can continue to do more practical work for international development assistance, and pay more attention to the voices of developing countries. We also hope he can lead the World Bank to make greater contribution to international development assistance and promote the sustainable, balanced and healthy development of world economy. China is willing to continue the contacts and cooperation with relevant parties.

Q: The US Special Envoy on Korean issue has arrived in Shanghai. He will discuss the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula with the ROK and Japanese ambassadors on Korean issue. Who will China send to participate in the discussion? What new suggestions will he bring to the discussion? What new progress has been achieved on the resumption of the Six-Party Talks?

A: According to my knowledge, the meeting in Shanghai is a non-governmental symposium, which is co-sponsored by Chinese and US relevant academic institutions. Some officials and scholars of relevant countries have been invited to attend the symposium. As for the details about the symposium, I advise you to consult the Shanghai Institute for International Studies. Officials from the Chinese Foreign Ministry also attend the meeting in personal capacity. The meeting can help all parties to put forward suggestions and propositions on the resumption of the Six-Party Talks and therefore is conducive to the resumption of the Talks.

China stands firm in its position to resume the Six-Party Talks. We will continue to make efforts for the early restart of the Talks. The time of resumption depends on the efforts and consensus of all parties.

Q: Whom will China send to attend the meeting?

A: An official from the Asian Affairs Department of Foreign Ministry. He will attend the meeting in personal capacity.

Q: Today, the Japanese Foreign Minister announced that China and Japan reached a consensus on ending the Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA) to China by 2008. Can you confirm the news and comment on it?

A: I haven't heard that the two sides reached an agreement. As for Japanese yen loans to China, China's position remains unchanged. The Japanese ODA to China is a mutually beneficial arrangement of fund made under special historical and political background. China and Japan are conducting consultations over relevant issues. We hope the two sides can proceed from the overall interests of our bilateral relations and properly handle relevant issues.

Q: The US State Secretary Rice is about to visit China, will she touch upon the issue on the Korean Peninsula with China? The DPRK urged Rice to apologize for her remarks labeling DPRK the "outpost of tyranny". If the US apologized, does the Chinese side think it would take kind of effect on the early resumption of the Six-Party Talks? The second question is, how does the Chinese side view Rice herself?

A: What kind of attitude the US should take towards the requests of DPRK is up to the US to decide. The Chinese side maintains that a peaceful solution of nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula through dialogues conforms to the interests of all parties. We hope relevant parties can make active efforts and promote the early resumption of the Six-Party Talks with a pragmatic and flexible attitude. I believe that concerns of relevant parties can be gradually addressed through in-depth discussions in the process of the Six-Party Talks.

In regard to your second question, Rice is the incumbent State Secretary of the United States. We are ready to work with her to advance the development of bilateral relations and the consultations and cooperation in international and regional issues between China and the US. We expect her upcoming visit to China fruitful.

Q: It is reported that the DPRK Government publicly executed some snakeheads in the northern part of DPRK near the Chinese border. Does the Chinese Government know relevant information? What attitude does the Chinese Government hold?

A: I haven't seen the news you mentioned, nor do I know the circumstances, so I can't comment.

Q: Just now you said that China hoped to maintain cooperative relations with the World Bank. Now Wolfowitz is likely to become the next World Bank chief. Wolfowitz made numerous provocative remarks on China in the past, how does China think of him as the head of World Bank?

A: Whoever becomes the president of World Bank, we are ready to work with him on the basis of equality.

Q: The US State Secretary linked the Anti-secession Law with the EU removal of arms-embargo against China. What comment do you have? The second question is, during the US State Secretary's upcoming visit to China, what specific issues will China talk with her on the Taiwan question and Anti-secession Law?

A; We have repeatedly stated our unchanged position on the EU removal of its arms embargo against China. Regarding your second question, since Dr.Rice's visit to China is yet to begin, I will brief you on relevant information during the visit.

Q: The situation in Sudan Darfur region has deteriorated. What's China's comment on that? Does China still oppose to the economic sanction against Sudan by the international community?

A: The member countries of the UN Security Council are having consultations on the issue of Darfur. The Security Council should deploy the peace-keeping forces in Darfur region as soon as possible, to help to carry out the hard-won Comprehensive Peace Accord, which we think is the most urgent thing to do. That will be conducive to the solution of the Darfur problem.

We have noticed that the Sudan Government had started to put the relevant personnel on trial according to the resolutions of the Security Council. The large scale violation to human rights and international humanism should be punished. China hopes the international security could make positive effort, to steer the situation in Darfur to a good direction.

Q: Korean Central News Agency claimed that the US had dispatched its Aircraft Carrier to ROK, to participate in ROK's military exercise. What's China's comment on that? Will this result in the delay of the Six-Party Talks?

A: The Six-Party Talks are faced with some difficulties and problems now, and is trapped in a dilemma. In such a moment, we hope the relevant parties could do more things conducive to the early resumption of the Six-Party Talks.

Q: US Secretary of State Rice have had consultations with officials of India and Pakistan, discussing the national defense cooperation between the US, Pakistan and India. What's China's comment on that?

A: China hails the development of friendly cooperative relations between the US and South Asian countries. We hope the relevant cooperation and arrangement could impose a positive effect on the local situation.

Q: On the issue of ODA, the Chinese side said the two sides are still discussing on it, while the Japanese Foreign Minister Machimura said the two sides had reached an agreement which decided this project would be ended by the year of 2008. Could you confirm it?

A: The ODA project is a bilateral capital cooperation. Its successive arrangement should be decided by bilateral consultation. China maintains the two sides should properly resolve this problem through friendly negotiation, and from the broad perspective of maintaining the two countries relationship.

Q: When I raised the question on the issue of ODA last time, you said Japan should 'ensure a good ending'. What's the meaning of 'a good ending'? What kind of ending could be called "a good ending"?

A: "Ensure a good ending" means, this ongoing cooperation is for the interest of both China and Japan, and is mutually beneficial. As to how to develop the next step, we think the two sides should properly resolve it through discussion. A proper resolution means it shouldn't harm the two countries' economic and trade cooperation, especially not to harm the overall situation of China-Japan relations.

Q: As to the Sudan Issue, does China still oppose any economic sanction against the Sudanese Government?

A: We are opposed to solving questions in international affairs by resorting to sanctions or pressure at will. Sanctions may not work.

Q: As to the Japanese loan to China, what has been specifically discussed by Foreign Minister Li and his Japanese counterpart Nobutaka Machimura during their telephone conversation?

A: During their telephone conversation, both sides discussed issues on Japanese loan to China. Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing elaborated on China's stance on the Japanese loan to China, that is, both sides should proceed from the general interest of Sino-Japanese relations and appropriately solve the issue.

If there are no other questions, the press conference is over. Thank you!

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