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Great Differences Remain at East China Sea Talks
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China and Japan have agreed in principle to set up a communication mechanism to cope with accidents on the East China Sea, a press release from the Chinese Foreign Ministry said Sunday.


The two countries ended the two-day sixth round of East China Sea talks Sunday noon at Beijing's Diaoyutai State Guesthouse, but great differences still remain, according to the press release.


The two sides acknowledged the importance of maintaining stability on the East China Sea and exchanged views "frankly" on each other's proposal of exploring the sea, the press release said.


Though there were still great differences, this round of consultation was "helpful" and "practical", it added.


The ministry said the two sides will continue the process of consultation.


Director of Chinese Foreign Ministry's Department of Asian Affairs Hu Zhengyue and head of the Japanese Foreign Ministry's Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau Kenichiro Sasae attended the talks as top negotiators.


(Xinhua News Agency July 9, 2006)


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