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BEIJING -- China on Wednesday urged the United States to cancel its sanctions on the Bank of Kunlun and stop damaging ties between the two nations.
"The US side imposing sanctions, in accordance with its domestic law, on a Chinese financial institution has severely violated the principles of international relations and impaired the interests of the Chinese side," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said in a statement, voicing "strong dissatisfaction" and "resolute opposition" to the US move.
On Tuesday, the US government announced the sanctions on the Bank of Kunlun and an Iraqi bank that it accuses of doing business with Tehran.
"(The Chinese side) will lodge solemn representations to the US side in Beijing and Washington," Qin said.
China and Iran have a normal state-to-state relationship and their normal, open and transparent business cooperation in energy and trade is unrelated to Iran's nuclear program, he said, adding that the cooperation neither violates any resolution of the UN Security Council nor harms the interests of any third party.
"China's stance on non-proliferation is consistent and clear," Qin said, adding that the country firmly safeguards the international system of non-proliferation and is committed, together with all the parties concerned including the United States, to the efforts in pursuit of an appropriate solution to the Iranian nuclear issue.
"However, the US side has repeatedly imposed sanctions on Chinese enterprises and banks regardless of China's concern," the spokesman said. "That will affect bilateral cooperation between China and the United States."
"The Chinese side urges the US side to immediately correct the wrongdoings, withdraw the groundless sanctions on the Bank of Kunlun, and stop doing anything harmful to China's interests as well as China-US relations," he added.