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China Hopes ROK Will Continue to Properly Handle THAAD Issue
 

China hopes the Republic of Korea (ROK) will continue to properly handle the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system issue, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on November 22.

Wang made the remarks during talks with his ROK counterpart Kang Kyung-wha.

China values the ROK's three-point pledge that it will not add to the existing THAAD system, not participate in the U.S.-led missile defense system, and not develop the ROK-U.S.-Japan military alliance, as well as the ROK's vow of having no intention of harming China's security interests,Wang said.

He called for joint efforts from the two sides to further increase mutual understanding, minimize their differences and create conditions for the full recovery of bilateral ties.

Developing bilateral ties not only accords with the trend of history and the times, but meets the aspiration of both peoples, Wang said, calling for smooth development of bilateral ties on the basis of mutual trust and respect.

Not long ago, leaders of the two countries met and clarified the direction for China-ROK relations, according to Wang.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties. Wang urged the two sides to take the anniversary and the upcoming high-level exchanges as an opportunity, learn from experiences and make strategic plans.

He expressed hope for more exchanges and communication, alignment of the two countries' development strategies under the Belt and Road Initiative, strengthened pragmatic cooperation and increased coordination in regional economic integration.

Bilateral ties have seen leapfrog development with progress in all areas over the past 25 years, according to Kang.

She said the ROK side is pleased that China and the ROK on Octobe 31 jointly issued a press release on overcoming the difficulties which currently affect bilateral relations.

The ROK will further cement high-level contacts and people-to-people exchanges on the basis of the consensus enshrined in the press release and the recent leaders' meetings, and promote early normalization of ROK-China ties for more progress, Kang said.

The two sides also exchanged views on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue.

Wang said China and the ROK share common interests on solving the issue through talks and safeguarding peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, calling on the two sides to enhance strategic communication.

Kang said the ROK shares the view that all parties should make efforts to solve the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue through talks and consultation, while pressure and sanctions are not the solution.

Kang is visiting China from November 21 to 23.

(Xinhua News Agency November 22, 2017)

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