|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on August 29, 2016|
Q: According to Kyodo News, the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) held in Kenya adopted the Nairobi Declaration on August 28, which promised to maintain rule-based maritime order and move forward reforms at the UN Security Council. Kyodo News said that the declaration comes as tensions remain high in the South China Sea and East China Sea amid China's growing assertiveness there, with innuendo projecting at China. What is your comment?
A: We all know that TICAD, as its name suggests, is a multilateral platform for communication and cooperation with its focus on African development. Its purpose is to support African development. Regrettably, during the 6th TICAD held last week in Kenya, Japan attempted to impose its wills on African countries to gain selfish interests and drive a wedge between China and African countries.
People have a right sense of justice. I have learnt that at the senior officials' meeting held before the TICAD summit, Japan went all out to direct the topic and outcome documents of the conference towards the Security Council reform and maritime security issues, which deviated from African development, the theme of the summit and led to strong dissatisfaction among African attendees. African countries all opposed politicizing TICAD, dragging Asian issues into Africa, or allowing Japan to impose its will on Africa. Judging from the final document of the TICAD summit, Japan finally had to accept all of African countries' opinions, limiting maritime-related issues to African maritime security cooperation and reaffirming the principled statements on Security Council reform in the Yokohama Declaration issued at the last TICAD. The report written by Kyodo news clearly failed to reflect the true story of what happened at the conference. This is also disrespectful to African countries.
Q: China invited many foreign guests to a massive military parade last year on September 3rd commemorating the victory of the Chinese People's War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression. Will there be a similar arrangement this year?
A: Last year China held a grand commemoration celebrating the 70th anniversary of the victory of the Chinese people's war of resistance against Japanese aggression. Speaking of this year, I haven't heard of any plan yet. The countdown has started for the G20 Summit, and we look forward to a successful G20 Summit in Hangzhou which will yield as many fruits as possible and give new boost to world economy.
Q: On the night of August 26, the UN Security Council issued a press release, expressing serious concerns and strong condemnation over the recent launch of ballistic missiles by the DPRK. What is your comment? Is there any change in China's position on the Korean Peninsula issue?
A: China's position on the Korean Peninsula issue is consistent. We are committed to realizing denuclearization on the Peninsula, maintaining peace and stability on the Peninsula, and resolving relevant issues through dialogue and consultation. As for the DPRK's launch of ballistic missiles, the resolutions of the Security Council have clear stipulations. Meanwhile, we hope that relevant parties can exercise calm and restraint, and refrain from provoking each other and heightening regional tensions. The signals sent out by the Security Council should also be all-encompassing and balanced.
Q: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will arrive in China this week. What is your expectation for this visit? Will the two sides talk about the China-Canada annual high-level meeting and free trade agreement?
A: At the invitation of Premier Li Keqiang, Prime Minister Trudeau will pay an official visit to China and attend the G20 Hangzhou Summit from August 30 to September 6. This will be his first visit to China since assuming office. During his stay here, Chinese leaders will respectively meet and hold talks with him, exchanging views on bilateral relations, practical cooperation in various fields and international and regional issues of common interest. It is believed that this visit will inject new impetus to the development of China-Canada strategic partnership. As we speak, the two sides are in close communication on preparatory work of this visit. As to what kind of agreements and outcomes will emerge from this visit, I suggest you stay tuned for the timely release.
Follow-up: Will China feel disappointed if no progress is made on the free trade agreement?
A: As I have said, we welcome and look forward to Prime Minister Trudeau's upcoming visit to China. Surly we want to arrive at as many mutually beneficial agreements and outcomes as possible with Canada. At present, the two sides are in close touch on the specific arrangements and outcomes. We will release relevant information in due course.
Q: Vatican's secretary of state expressed high hopes to improve China-Vatican relations last Saturday. What's your comment?
A: China is always sincere about improving its relations with Vatican, and has made relentless efforts to this end. The current channel of dialogue and contact between the two sides runs well and effectively. Following certain principles, we would like to work together with the Vatican side for constructive dialogues, meet each other half way and strive for the continuous development of bilateral relations.
Follow-up: Do you believe that progress has already been made on China-Vatican relations?
A: As I said, the two sides have a well-functioning and effective way of communication. We are willing to work alongside the Vatican side to move forward bilateral relat ions in accordance with certain principles.