Tuesday, 20 November, 2018

China scolds United States over presence in South China Sea

CHINA-US-DIPLOMACY Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger met with Chinese President Xi Jinping today
Patty Aguilar | 10 November, 2018, 17:52

The U.S. on November 5 imposed "the toughest ever" sanctions on a defiant Iran aimed at altering the Iranian regime's "behaviour". -China Diplomatic and Security Dialogue in Washington was "productive", he highlighted China's repression of some religious groups.

A "frank" exchange of views can be expected in top-level diplomatic and security talks between the United States and China on Friday, including on issues such as human rights and the South China Sea, the U.S. ambassador to China said.

Politburo member Yang bluntly told the U.S. to stop sending ships and aircraft near China-claimed territory in the South China Sea. Yang insisted that Chinese people have freedom of religion, and that "foreign countries have no right to interfere".

Mr. Pompeo, while interacting with the media, said, "President Trump has made it clear that the US seeks a constructive and results-oriented relationship with China grounded in fairness, reciprocity and respect".

"As for the present China-U.S. economic and trade dispute, we believe it ought to be and can be appropriately resolve via equal dialogue", Wang said, according to China's Foreign Ministry.

In response to a question by VOA, senior Chinese diplomat Yang noted, "Taiwan is an inalienable part of the Chinese territory", adding Beijing would continue to remain committed to its "One China principle".

Even as the United States and China butt heads over trade, their top diplomats and defense chiefs will be meeting in Washington Friday, looking to tamp down tensions on other issues that have put a chill on relations between the two world powers.

News agency AFP reports that today's delayed meeting in Washington comes weeks before US President Donald Trump is expected to meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinpingon the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Argentina.

Reflecting growing US concerns about the Chinese cyber threat, a senior USA intelligence official on Thursday accused China of violating a 2015 agreement aimed at stopping cyber espionage through the hacking of government and corporate data.

Kissinger said he is pleased to meet Xi in China again at a critical moment when Sino-U.S. relations have entered a new stage.

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The EU said Friday, before the dissolution, that the crisis had scarred the Indian Ocean island's global reputation. Sirisena suspended parliament to give himself more time to engineer defections, according to the opposition.

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FILE - A demonstrator holds flags of Taiwan and the United States in support of Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen during a stopover after her visit to Latin America in Burlingame, Calif., Jan. 14, 2017.

"We want this to be a constructive, results-oriented relationship with China", Branstad said.

Fault lines between the USA and China were on clear display Friday as senior officials challenged each other over the South China Sea, Taiwan, religious freedom and trade just weeks before President Donald Trump is set to meet with President Xi Jinping.

Yang said that China, North Korea's main lifeline, would enforce United Nations sanctions but voiced hope that Washington and Pyongyang "will meet each other halfway" and "accommodate each other's legitimate concerns".

But just as he was speaking, a top advisor to Trump, Peter Navarro, vowed to press China hard on trade.

USA officials said they would not halt so-called freedom-of-navigation patrols that are aimed at ensuring countries do not restrict traffic in global waters.

He added that the Pentagon has "sought ways to lessen tension, maintain open lines of communications between our militaries and reduce the risk of miscalculation".

Mattis said all military and civilian vessels and aircraft should "operate in a safe and professional manner" in the contested worldwide waters.

The islands, known as China's "Big Three", are located in the disputed Spratly chain and have been built up into garrisons with massive radar installations, scores of buildings and military-grade runways.

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