Chinese Foreign Minister and the United States Secretary of State exchanged views over a series of topics including the South China Sea dispute at a meeting in Beijing on Saturday.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Beijing early Saturday for a visit to China. Prior to the official meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, the two countries' top diplomats held a one-hour talk.
"Before your visit to China, some people have voiced some inharmonious tunes, but I think you come for communication, rather than to pick a fight," said Wang at the talk.
At a joint press conference after the two and half an hour meeting, the two diplomats said that they have reached consensus on a series of topics including the China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue in June and President Xi Jinping' s state visit to the United States in September.
As to the differences in related areas, they said they had "frank discussions" and exchanged views.
"We're concerned about the pace and the scope of China's land reclamation in the South China Sea. And I urged China through Foreign Minister Wang to take actions that will join with everybody in helping to reduce tensions and increase the prospect of a diplomatic solution. And I think we agree that the region needs "smart diplomacy" in order to conclude the ASEAN and China code of conduct, and not outposts and military strips," said Kerry.
"What I would like to reiterate is that China's will in safeguarding its territorial sovereignty and integrity is solid as rocks and unquestionable. The related countries should seek a proper solution to the issue through direct talks, and on the basis of respecting the history and in line with the international laws, especially by diplomatic means as mentioned by the Secretary of State. This stance, which is our established stance, will never change in the future," said Wang.
Wang Yi said that as a country who joined the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, China is committed to fulfilling its obligations and responsibilities. However, China' s infrastructure improvement on the Nansha Islands is an affair within its sovereignty.
China and the United States have both differences and common views over the South China Sea issue, and both the countries hope to safeguard peace and stability in the region, said Wang.
"As to the differences, our attitude is that it doesn't matter to have differences, but there must not be misunderstanding, or even misjudgment," said Wang.
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