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China affirms tough territorial stance

Kyodo

A top Chinese military official said Sunday that Beijing will not compromise on its claims to contested isles in the East and South China seas, despite its willingness to engage in discussions.

“We should put aside disputes . . . and seek solutions through dialogue and coordination,” Lt. Gen. Qi Jianguo, deputy chief of the General Staff of the People’s Liberation Army, said in a speech at the Shangri-La Dialogue meeting in Singapore.

Qi stressed, however, that “dialogue and consultations for the sake of peace by no means denote unconditional compromise.”

Asserting China’s sovereignty over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea as well as a host of South China Sea isles claimed by multiple nations, he said patrols by Chinese warships are “totally legitimate, as it is uncontroversial to patrol within our own territory.”

His remarks came after U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned at the annual forum Saturday that Washington opposes any forcible intervention to alter the current status of the Senkaku Islands, as well as that of islet chains in the South China Sea where China’s claims overlap with a variety of regional neighbors.

“The United States stands firmly against any coercive attempts to alter the status quo,” Hagel said in a speech in an apparent allusion to recent Chinese assertiveness over the territories.

But Qi, without making any direct references, appeared to take a swipe at the U.S. military re-balancing in Asia, warning that “countries in the region should refrain from building military alliances, setting imaginary enemies and taking action against a third party.”

Qi also rejected the Philippine’s move to persuade China to settle their sovereignty clash over the Spratly Islands in a U.N.-affiliated court. The Spratlys are claimed in their entirety or in part by a raft of rival nations.

The Singapore forum, the 12th of its kind, opened Friday evening and brings together defense ministers and officials mainly from the Asia-Pacific region.

  • $53594500

    chinas already reaping the reward for its bellicosity with more similar rewards coming. not the wisest course of action to follow

  • disqus_F0zNLIegUA

    It is about time for China to take a stance for its territorial integrity! While China did not have enough military strength to defend its remote islands, the Philippines, Japs, and Vietnam have come into China’s backyard and robbed China way too much. For years, China has been trying to use diplomacy to solve these problems only to no avail. Glad to see that China finally begin to show some backbone!

    • railfe

      wow! you are a proud citizen of china my friend. When did Vietnam and Philippines rob china? What type of books where you reading? Did you know that china conquer vietnam during its early years? That what you call peaceful people huh?? They just started claiming those island when they found out how many resources they can exploit. Basis from scholars who “recently found out” that you own it. So when can i expect India to claim the rest of the”Indian ocean?

    • Yaiba Oreira

      Robbed China’s backyard? Don’t you know that way back 1800′s, Chinese are coming to Philippines, 1. To trade, 2. To live here, because of your corrupt communist idealism!

      Want proof? The whole world has Chinese town, and also try to ask Taiwanese why they left your mainland!

  • Lance Black

    China is BULLYING the Asian countries for 3 decades now..Check out their activities in Africa for ex. in GHANA. Bribe the officials to build the govt buildings for 50 mils, promised to hire locals then turn around brought their OWN people, created a china town in africa and control the fishing water in GHANA.. 50 mils investment had a BILLION$$$$ return to mainland…..

    • nqk123

      3 decades, i think u mean 3000 + years

  • Michael Williams

    The Chinese government will not back down because it would not settle well with it’s people. The Japanese government will not back down simply because China is trying to push them around, because they know the United States has their corner. And the United States government will not change it’s stance, because of the actions of the Chinese government; especially the government organized cyber theft of American civilian and military copyrights and technologies (and just about every other Western Power) .

    This entire situation seems unlikely to resolve itself through any means other then direct conflict.

  • white dragon

    what now do something about this military aggression of china before it’s to late mr,president Obama and the UN,NATO.dont let the past repeat it’s self just like WW3 stop this now.