Diplomat: China stresses ties with neighbors

Updated: 2012-01-06 18:27


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Topic: fishing disputes in the Yellow Sea

Q: Would you please tell us about the latest progress on the conflict between coast guards from the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Chinese fishermen on Dec 12? ROK has updated its fisheries laws against illegal fishing in the wake of this incident, so what is China's take on the measures? What is the impact on China-ROK relations?

A: The Chinese side regrets that the recent incident caused the death of a ROK coast guard officer, which is unfortunate.

We hold that Chinese fishermen's fishing activities in some sea areas are for their livelihood, but when some incidents occur, we will work for a clear and appropriate solution.

China is obliged to protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese fishermen. And we urge a civilized enforcement of law from the ROK authorities and a humanitarian treatment of the Chinese fishermen, without using arms.

And China's fishing authorities have taken measures to strengthen efforts to instruct fishermen about the laws and to tighten regulations on vessels fishing in the sea. We do hope the recent skirmishes over fishing will not influence bilateral relations between China and the ROK.