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Kerry concludes “very constructive” talks in China
February 15, 2014, 4:30 am


Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with visiting U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Beijing, capital of China, Feb. 14, 2014 [Xinhua]

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with visiting U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Beijing, capital of China, Feb. 14, 2014 [Xinhua]

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday told visiting US Secretary of State John Kerry in Beijing that China would continue to enhance dialogue to tide over differences with the US.

“China is firmly committed to building a new model of major-country relationship between China and the United States together with the US side,” Chinese President Xi Jinping said in his 70-minute meeting with Kerry at the Great Hall of the People.

With the US President Barack Obama’s much hyped Asia Pivot, Kerry who has been caught up with crisis-management in the Middle-East, will now devote time to advancing American interests in Asia-Pacific.

Kerry arrived in Beijing from Seoul Friday morning for a day-long China visit. This is his second visit to China and his fifth to Asia since he took office in February last year.

Kerry left Washington on Wednesday for a one-week trip to Seoul, Beijing, Jakarta and Abu Dhabi.

2014 marks the 35th year of diplomatic ties between the two.

Kerry in Beijing also met Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Foreign Minister Wang Yi as the world’s two largest economies manage an increasingly complex relationship.

The US Secretary of State describes his talks with Chinese leaders as “very constructive and positive” and that the two sides will be “managing bilateral differences effectively and finding a way to cooperate practically when possible.”

The two sides also discussed preparations for the “Strategic and Economic Dialogue” scheduled to be held in China this summer.

Referring to the South China Sea dispute, the Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Kerry Beijing would maintain peace in the region by working with ASEAN.

Wang also said “certain people internationally” are creating tensions by efforts to “spread untruths”.

Several ASEAN nations including Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam have contesting claims over the South China Sea alongwith China.

China’s maritime dispute with the Philippines had prompted the latter to come to an agreement with the US to develop its Palawan Island into a US military base.

The South China Sea is one of the world’s most strategically important waterways and is exceedingly rich with minerals.
Meanwhile, North Korea was also the top of Kerry’s agenda when he met the senior Chinese officials.

“China will never allow chaos or war on the Korean Peninsula,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Kerry who said he was happy with China’s “firm commitment” to the goal of denuclearizing North Korea.

“At every level in all our conversations today, China could not have more forcefully reiterated its commitment to that goal,” said Kerry in a press briefing Friday evening.


TBP and Agencies

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