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US-Japan statement on Taiwan opposed
By Qin Jize (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-02-21 06:05

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman in Beijing yesterday expressed grave concern about a US and Japanese statement that listed the Taiwan question as one of their "common strategic objectives."

Kong Quan said the Chinese Government and its people were firmly against the United States and Japan issuing any joint statement over the Taiwan question, which interferes with China's sovereignty, territorial integrity and state security.

He said the US-Japan alliance was a bilateral arrangement formed in special historical conditions - in the Cold War era and should not exceed its bilateral jurisdiction.

Kong said that "peace, development and co-operation" are the growing trends in the world and the aspiration of its people.

He said he hoped the United States and Japan would fully consider the interests and concerns of other countries in the Asia-Pacific region and realize objectives conducive to the peace and stability of the whole region.

"We hope the United States and Japan will see to their commitments towards the Taiwan question with practical actions," Kong said.

The US-Japan alliance in Washington released a joint statement on Saturday after a top ministerial level meeting of the US-Japan Security Consultative Committee, also known as the "two plus two" meeting.

The two allies declared that to encourage the peaceful resolution of issues concerning the Taiwan Straits through dialogue was part of their common strategic objectives.

They also urged China to "improve transparency of its military affairs."

The meeting was participated in by US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Japanese Defence Agency chief Yoshinori Ono and Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura.

This is reportedly the first time during their half-century-old alliance that the US and Japan have expressed shared anxiety over tensions in the Taiwan Straits.

Kong said China pursues an independent foreign policy of peace and carries out a defensive national defence policy.

China has always been an active force in maintaining world peace and promoting common development, he said.

He added any irresponsible remarks on China's national defence construction to maintain state security and territorial integrity were untenable.

(China Daily 02/21/2005 page1)

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