The development of China's
national defense force, including naval forces, poses no threat to other
nations, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang yesterday.
Qin made the remarks at a regular press conference when asked to confirm
reports that China might have its first aircraft carrier by 2010úČ and asked to
comment on the necessity of owning an aircraft carrier and whether building an
aircraft carrier would cause concern of neighboring countries.
Qin said China's armed forces have a duty to protect the country's large
coastal area and territorial seas.
He said relevant departments will conscientiously study the aforementioned
issues, taking various factors into consideration.
The national defense force operates to safeguard the nation's security and
development interests, not to start an arms race with other countries, Qin said.
Qin reiterated that China will adhere to a road of peaceful development and a
defensive national defense policy. China is ready to work with the international
community to build a harmonious world of sustained peace and common prosperity.