John Negroponte, who has been nominated by US President George W. Bush to serve as deputy state secretary, told US lawmakers on Tuesday that it was in the interests of the United States to continue the policy of engagement with China.
Speaking at his Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing, Negroponte, currently director of National Intelligence, said "China is a very important country. And it's going to be for the century ahead of us. I think it's in our interest to engage China."
"I think we need to engage China. And I think that that ought to be our approach to that country; not one of confrontation, but engagement," he added.
Negroponte, poised to replace Robert Zoellick who resigned last spring, said he looked forward to resuming dialogue with China on political matters at the vice foreign ministerial level.
Negroponte also stressed the importance of upholding the one-China policy.
When asked by Senator Lisa Murkowski about Taiwanese authorities' recent call to revise the island's "constitution," Negroponte said, "The State Department view is that we support a one-China policy and the foundation documents that -- the three different communiques with regard to the unity of China."
China and the United States signed the three joint communiques to guide the development of their bilateral relations in 1972, 1979 and 1982 respectively.
Negroponte reaffirmed his support for the one China policy, saying it would be "unwise to do anything that might be at cross-purposes" with the communiques.
(Xinhua News Agency January 31, 2007)