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Friday, August 7, 2015, 09:30

China makes South China Sea position clear

By Xinhua

China makes South China Sea position clear
China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi gestures at a joint press conference with Thailand during the 48th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Foreign Ministers meeting at the Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur on Aug 5, 2015. (AFP PHOTO / MANAN VATSYAYANA)

KUALA LUMPUR - Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made clear China's stance on the South China Sea issue on Thursday, rejecting the claims of the Philippines, Japan and United States.

Speaking at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), Wang said China felt imperative to speak the truth and make clear its stance as the South China Sea issue was raised by some countries at the ARF and the East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers' Meeting earlier.

"First of all, the general situation in the South China Sea is stable, and the possibility of a major conflict simply doesn't exist," he said. "Therefore, China is against any unconstructive words and deeds that exaggerate differences and stand-off, and create tensions. They do not comply with facts at all."

China has the same concern as other countries over freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, as most of China's merchandise is transported by the Sea, the Chinese minister said, noting that freedom of navigation there is very important to China, too.

Wang said, "China has always held the stance that parties enjoy freedom of navigation and flyover in the South China Sea according to international laws. China is willing to work with other parties in keeping freedom of navigation and flyover in the South China Sea."

With regard to the disputes over the Nansha Islands, Wang pointed out, "It is an old problem."

Islands in the South China Sea are China's territories as China is the first country to discover and name the islands, he emphasized.

The Chinese minister said this year marks the 70th anniversary of the victory of World War II, and 70 years ago China took back Nansha and Xisha Islands, which had been illegally occupied by Japan.

Highlighting that the Cairo Declaration and the Potsdam Proclamation, on which the post-war international order is founded, demanded Japan return the territories it had stolen from China, Wang said.

"The naval ships that were used by China to take back the islands were provided by the United States, our ally," he said, adding, "These facts must have been recorded in your respective archives."

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