China asks nations not to provide stage to Tibetan separatists
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Last Updated: Friday, July 16, 2010, 00:06
Beijing: China has asked the international community not to provide stage to Tibetan separatists, asserting that issues related to the region are China's internal affairs.

Answering questions at a press briefing after his talks with his British counterpart William Hague yesterday, Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said Tibet is an inalienable part of Chinese territory.

He said Tibet has adopted a system of ethnic regional autonomy after the Chinese government dissolved the "aristocratic local government of Tibet and freed more than one million serfs" in March 1959.

He said since the "democratic reforms" more than 50 years ago, Tibet has made remarkable achievements in all fields including political, economic, cultural, and enjoyed comprehensive social progress and proper preservation of cultural heritages.

Yang insisted that the Tibetan people enjoy freedom of speech and all rights endowed in the laws.

"The Tibet issue bears on China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and its core interests, and is the internal affair of China," Yang was quoted as saying by the official Xinhua news agency.

He called on all countries to respect China's sovereignty, and not provide a stage to Tibetan separatists.

In response to questions concerning Afghanistan, Yang said China would like to work with the international community, including Britain, to work actively for an early settlement of the Afghanistan issue.

He said as Afghanistan is an important neighbour of China, and Beijing is committed to develop good neighbourly friendship with Afghanistan.

China highly values, and actively takes part in the reconstruction process of Afghanistan and welcomes an independent Afghanistan with peace, stability and progress, he said.

During the talks, Yang also called on China and Britain to properly handle their differences, and work together in tackling global and regional challenges.

China speaks out against US-SKorea wargames

China repeated its opposition on Thursday to planned US-South Korean war games off its coast, calling for restraint to avoid escalating tension on the Korean Peninsula, state media reported.

The United States said it would likely hold joint exercises with South Korea in the Yellow Sea in the near future, raising tensions with North Korea ahead of key military talks with Pyongyang.

North Korea's military held talks today with the United Nations Command, the first since the sinking of a South Korean warship, after postponing the meeting from Tuesday for "administrative reasons."

Only hours before the start of the meeting, the Pentagon said the US intended to hold joint military exercises with South Korea, despite previous objections from China, the North's main ally.

Chinese Foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang played down suggestions that China and North Korea could respond with military drills of their own, however, and was quoted by the official Xinhua news agency as saying the idea demonstrated "a typical Cold war mindset".

"The hypothesis (of conducting a drill) means dividing the region into different military alliances and viewing regional security from an angle of opposition and confrontation as in the Cold war era," he was quoted as saying.

"Times have changed. No single country or military alliance can resolve issues like regional security and stability."


First Published: Friday, July 16, 2010, 00:06

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