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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Liu Jianchao's Press Conference on 15 November 2005


On the afternoon of November 15th, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Liu Jianchao held a regular press conference.


Liu Jianchao: Good afternoon, everybody. I would like to begin with an announcement.


At the invitation of Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing of the People's Republic of China, Foreign Minister Armando Loaiza Mariaca of the Republic of Bolivia will pay an official visit to China from November 20 to 25.


With that, I am happy to take your questions.


Q: Please brief us on the schedule of President Bush's visit to China. It has been reported that he would be going to a church on Sunday morning. Can you confirm?


A: President Bush's visit to China is slated through 19th to 21st. His main activities have been arranged on 20th. You suggested that he would probably go visiting a church. It is his personal plan, which is under arrangement.


Q: Reports say that there will not be any bilateral meetings between China and Japan at the sidelines of APEC meetings. Can you confirm? If so, why? Reports from Hongkong say that following President Bush's visit to China, Director Wang Zaixi of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council will be going to Washington to discuss Taiwan question. Can you confirm? Will China sign any agreement with the US then?


A: With regard to the summit meeting between China and Japan at the sidelines of APEC meetings, I can tell you that there is no such arrangement. The atmosphere and conditions are not sufficient for making it happen.

On your second question, I am not aware of the issue you mentioned. I can make enquiries for you. You can also raise your question to the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council.


Q: The 13th Summit of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) adopted Dhaka Declaration, giving China observer status. Pakistan has been highly supportive in making this happen. What kind of role will China play in the organization?


A: The Chinese Government attaches great importance to the significant role of SAARC in developing regional economy and promoting prosperity. We believe that SAARC has played a significant role and made agreeable achievements in this regard since its establishment 20 years ago.

China welcomes the successful convocation of the 13th Summit of SAARC and hopes that Southern Asian countries can make greater achievements in promoting regional cooperation. We have taken note that the Summit accepted China in principle as an observer of SAARC, of which we think positively. We stand ready to work with SAARC members to strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation to achieve joint prosperity.


Q: Yesterday the US Embassy issued again an alert on possible terrorist attacks against US citizens in Guangdong. It warns that some Chinese citizens may also be affected. What information has the Chinese Government received from the US? What corresponding precautions have been taken?


A: We have taken note that at 2:30 pm yesterday, the US Embassy in China issued a travel alert on its webpage, warning US citizens in China. Before the release of the alert, the US had informed the Chinese public security authorities. China immediately held emergency meetings and made careful and thorough arrangement. I would like to stress that the Chinese Government has always attached great importance to the safety of foreign institutions and citizens, has taken and will continue to take effective and concrete measures to guarantee their security in China. We are confident that with these effective measures and the precautions taken by foreign citizens themselves, they can enjoy their safe life, traveling, studying and working in China.


Q: Does China believe that President Bush's visit to China will be a good opportunity for China to ask the US Government to improve its human rights record?


A: The Chinese Government believes that human rights issues are domestic affairs in nature. But we do not oppose two-way dialogue on the issue with relevant countries on an equal footing so as to enhance mutual understanding, narrow differences and promote bilateral ties. During President Bush's visit to China, views will be exchanged on an extensive range of issues. We hope that the differences between the two sides can be narrowed after further communication through the visit.


Q: There were reports on yesterday's China Daily that Guangdong Provincial Government planned to build two hospitals to relocate those with AIDS and HIV. If it is true, it will arouse criticism of the international community. Is China concerned about it?


A: I have yet to see the news you asked. But I have to question its accuracy. I need to double check about it. The Chinese Government has always treated those with AIDS and HIV in a humanitarian way. We have made strenuous efforts in AIDS prevention and treatment, trying our best to provide better medical treatment for them. In the meantime, it has been vigorously advocated in our society to remove any discrimination against them. A lot of campaigns have been launched to treat them as equal, achieving good results.


Q: There were reports last week saying that Japanese fighters stopped 30 Chinese flights which were trying to get close to Japanese territorial space in the past seven months. The number doubled that in the same period of the previous year. Can you confirm? If it is true, why? Chen Shuibian expressed his hope for a more active role of Japan in Asia-Pacific region, more likely in military field. What is your reaction?


A: For your first question, Chinese planes were there for normal patrol and training programmes. Their activities there are in line with international law and norms.

For your second question, I am not in a position to make any comment on remarks made by a Chinese provincial leader.


Q: The UN adopted a resolution on Syria several weeks ago. How do you assess Syria's cooperation with the Mehlis Commission? Is the Commission trustworthy? Do you worry that the Commission might turn out to be like the UN "oil for food" Committee ? half of its members were spying on relevant countries?


A: Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing delivered an important speech on behalf of the Chinese Government on the UN Foreign Ministers' meeting on Syria on October 31st. He believed that the Security Council had the responsibility to call for relevant parties to implement Resolution 1595 and provide comprehensive, full and serious cooperation with the Commission. In the meantime, the Commission should conduct open and impartial investigations to obtain solid evidence at an early date so that truth will be revealed and justice will be done for the victim and authority of the Security Council can be protected. We hope that relevant resolutions of the UN can be implemented in real earnest.

Q: Do you have any further comments on the Annual Report released by US China Economic Security Review Commission last week? Will China make some clarification during President Bush's visit to China later this week concerning negative contents in that report?

A: I briefed you on China's position on that issue at last week's Press Conference. We have taken note that this report attacked China for no reason on issues of economy, trade, Taiwan and military capacity building,interfering with China's internal affairs. This report maliciously preached on the so-called "China Threat", misleading media and the public. We resolutely oppose it in that it went against the consensus by China and US in their commitment to develop constructive relations and cooperation, attempting to lay obstacles for the exchanges and cooperation between the two countries in various fields.

Q: The ROK government yesterday revealed some details of the DPRK's five-stage plan to abandon its nuclear weapons programs. Does China agree on that plan?  How do you see ROK's leaking of the details of the plan?

A: I am not aware of any specific information relating to that. You must have taken note of the Chairman's Statement released at the just-concluded first phrase of the Fifth Round of the Six-Party Talks. During the meeting, parties concerned held earnest, practical and constructive discussions on how to fulfill the commitment in the Joint Statement, reached at the end of the Fourth Round of the Six Party Talks. Different parties have made different initiatives. Some are similar and others are different in contents. Some are constructive and worthy of earnest consideration and discussion. We think positively of the ROK's constructive role in the process of the Six Party Talks on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula. We believe that plans advanced by parties concerned will receive earnest discussion and study.


If there are no more questions, thank you!

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