At the invitation of the government of the Federated States of Micronesia, Wang Hong, head of the State Oceanic Administration of China,will attend the inauguration ceremony of President-elect Peter Christian on July 10 as the special envoy of President Xi Jinping.
Q: Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey released the National Military Strategy of the United States of America 2015. The report welcomes a rising China, and reaffirms its commitment to a substantial military-to-military relationship with China, but also says that China's land reclamation projects in the South China Sea are adding tensions to the Asia-Pacific region, and warns of a low but growing probability of the US at war with a major power. What is China's comment?
A: We are dissatisfied with and opposed to some contents of the US report which groundlessly exaggerates the China threat. China has repeatedly elaborated on its position concerning the construction on some maritime features in the South China Sea. The US side should throw away the Cold War mentality, take an unbiased perspective of China's strategic intention, work together with China to advance the building of the new model of major-country relationship between China and the US following the consensus reached by the two leaders and the spirit of non-confrontation, non-conflicts, mutual respect and win-win cooperation. This is also in the interests of the US itself.
Q: According to the Japanese media, the outline of Japan's defense whitepaper 2015 says that China's defense expenditures are now 41 times higher than fiscal 1989, and China is taking high-handed measures including the rapid and massive reclamation projects in the South China Sea. Japan will deploy coastguard surveillance forces and amphibious forces in Okinawa and Yonaguni in response to the Diaoyu Dao issue. How does China comment on this?
A: We have noted the report, and are deeply concerned about and dissatisfied with the move taken by Japan. I would like to underscore the following three points:
First, China is devoted to a path of peaceful development and a national defense policy that is defensive in nature. The growth of China's national defense capability is justified, and poses no threat to other countries. They can set their mind at rest if they have no intention to offend. China maintains that national defense building should be commensurate with economic growth. The Japanese side must not forget that as its Internal Ministry revealed, Japan's annual military expenditure grew at a double-digit rate or topping 20% at its highest, along with the rapid growth of its economy from 1961 to 1979. Today its per capita military spending is still five times that of China. Japan is in no position to make carping comments on China's normal military development.
Second, China's lawful, justified and reasonable construction on some garrisoned Nansha islands and reefs is well within China's sovereignty. Japan is not a country concerned to the South China Sea issue. But in recent days it has been overactive on this issue by defaming China and deliberately creating and hyping up tensions. The true intention behind these moves can never be more obvious, that is to find an excuse for the unprecedented domestic policy adjustment on security and defense. We once again urge the Japanese side to draw hard lessons from history, be discreet about words and actions on military security issues, immediately stop hyping up the South China Sea issue and launching groundless accusations against China.
Third, China holds a clear and consistent position on the Diaoyu Dao issue. We will continue to take necessary steps to firmly safeguard territorial sovereignty over the Diaoyu Dao. We urge the Japanese side to look squarely at the history and the reality, put an end to all provocative words and deeds that undermine China's territorial sovereignty, and make efforts towards the proper settlement of the Diaoyu Dao issue through dialogue.
Q: Recent terrorist attacks on multiple military checkpoints in North Sinai of Egypt caused tensions in the area. What is China's comment on this?
A: We have taken note of the report. China follows the situation in Egypt, and hopes for its early realization of stability and development.
Q: Has China offered any specific assistance to Greece? Can you give us more details if there is any?
A: The international community including China pays close attention to the current problems faced by Greece. As we have said, Premier Li Keqiang enunciated the Chinese government's position on many occasions during his recent visit to Belgium and France. China always stands for the integration process of Europe, and wishes to see a prosperous Europe, a united EU and a strong euro. The Greek debt issue is an internal affair of Europe. Yet whether Greece can straighten out the current problems and whether it stays in the eurozone bear on the stability of the euro as well as global financial stability and economic recovery.
China always highly values the relationship with Greece and the EU. We have contributed our share to help Greece overcome the sovereign debt issue, and addressed some concerns and requests of Greece with tangible moves. China will remain a long-term and responsible holder of the European debt, and will press ahead with bilateral pragmatic cooperation with Greece. We hope international creditors and Greece can reach an agreement and tide over the crisis as soon as possible. It is hoped that the Greek debt issue can be properly resolved so that both Greece and the eurozone can weather this crisis.