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Concerns Expressed over Missile Test Report
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The Foreign Ministry yesterday expressed concern over the tensions aroused by the reported North Korean missile test and urged all concerned to act in a way conducive to the region's peace and stability.

"We've noticed relevant reports and the position of each party," the ministry's spokeswoman Jiang Yu told a regular news briefing. "We're very concerned about the current situation."

Jiang said China has always been devoted to maintaining the peace and stability of Northeast Asia and will continue to make constructive efforts to achieve those goals.

Regarding the six-party talks on the Korean Peninsular nuclear issue, Jiang said China has maintained close contact and communication with all parties concerned and made active efforts for the discussions to resume. 

She said China believes that all parties should firmly follow the path of peacefully resolving the issue through talks, firmly uphold the goal of realizing a nuclear weapon-free Korean Peninsula and push forward the six-party negotiation process.

Jiang also expressed her hope that all parties should show flexibility and make more efforts to improve mutual trust in order to restart the six-party talks as soon as possible.

Turning to the Iranian nuclear issue, Jiang urged Iran to make an early response to the EU's package proposal to resolve it.

"We hope Iran will be highly attentive to the concerns of the international community, take a positive attitude and make a formal response to the package proposal at an early date," said Jiang.

"We also hope that all the other parties will show the utmost patience and restraint, and continue to take a constructive attitude to create a favorable atmosphere and conditions for the resumption of the negotiations," she said.

Jiang said the proposal has created a precious opportunity for solving the nuclear issue through negotiations.

"We believe the resumption of the negotiations as soon as possible is the common aspiration of the international community and serves the interests of all parties including Iran," she said.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday that Iran would respond by mid-August to the proposal presented to Tehran in early June by EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana.

Turning to Middle East issues, Jiang said China's special envoy Sun Bigan is to visit Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Palestine from June 25 to July 2.

"China is very concerned about the situation in the Middle East and Ambassador Sun is to confer with parties concerned about the current situation there," she said.

Since taking up the post of Middle East special envoy in April, Sun has been in wide contact with envoys of relevant countries, Jiang said.

Sun also participated in the political consultation on the Middle East peace process during a recent China-Arab Cooperation Forum held in Beijing, she added.

"Relevant parties have conveyed their hope to the Chinese side that Ambassador Sun can visit the Middle East soon," she said.

China has been closely following the progress in the Middle East and has kept close contacts with Arab countries, she noted.

"China is participating in the solution of Middle East issues in its own way," Jiang said. She added that China has all along played a constructive role in the process.

Jiang said China supports the Middle East peace process and the road map peace plan and wishes to solve Middle East issues through political negotiations on the basis of relevant UN resolutions and the "land for peace" principle.

"China hopes the new governments of Palestine and Israel can take a more active stance, build mutual trust and solve disputes through peaceful negotiations," she said.

In another development, Jiang said China aims to improve ties with Japan by holding activities marking the 60th anniversary of the repatriation of 1.05 million Japanese emigrants.

She said the purpose of the activities was to promote mutual trust and understanding between the two peoples and ameliorate bilateral ties.

A forum on China-Japan relations and other commemorative activities marking the 60th anniversary of the repatriation will be held from June 24 to 26 in Huludao, a small island in north China's Liaoning Province by the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and the Liaoning provincial government.

The repatriation reflects the benevolence and humanitarian spirit of Chinese people, said Jiang, adding that both sides should value and cherish the hard-earned China-Japan relationship.

On May 7, 1946, nine months after Japan surrendered to the Allies, about 2,500 Japanese emigrants started their voyage home from Huludao, marking the beginning of the repatriation.

(China Daily, Xinhua News Agency June 23, 2006)

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