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4th Sino-US Strategic Dialogue to Be Held in Washington
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The fourth round of Sino-US strategic dialogue, set to convene in Washington from June 20, is set to contribute to the healthy improvement of bilateral ties.


The three-day dialogue will jointly be co-chaired by Deputy Foreign Minister Dai Bingguo and US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte.


Foreign Ministry spokesperson Qin Gang reiterated yesterday that the dialogue mechanism, based on the consensus reached by Presidents Hu Jintao and George W. Bush in 2004, now served as a strong platform from which to debate strategic and political issues.


China and the US will use the spirit of in-depth exchange from the three previous rounds of dialogue to cover new ground, Qin said.


On whether the Chinese currency will be revalued, he stated that any changes would be carried out in full accord with the country's planned economic development. He added that China would not succumb to pressure from the US Congress, after a group of US senators pressed for legislation this week to push the revaluation of the yuan. "Economic and trade issues should not be politicized," Qin said. "The US Congress believes the yuan exchange rate is too low but on the basis of whose standard?


Special representative may meet US envoys on Darfur


Liu Guijin, special representative of the Chinese government for Darfur, may soon meet with US representatives to discuss Darfur, Qin said, although the details of such a meeting are yet to be defined.


Since taking up the mantle of China's special representative to Darfur in May, Liu has been on a fact-finding trip to Sudan.


China is working with the international community to bring peace, development and stability to Darfur as early as possible, on the basis of the Annan peace plan, he said.


Palestinian FM's visit


China is worried over Middle Eastern tension, Qin said, and urges Israel and Palestine to act with restraint and to return to the negotiating table soon.


Palestinian Foreign Minister Ziad Abu Amer begins a three-day visit to China today.


A statement issued by Amer's office said his tour, which also takes him to Japan, Russia and Europe, is aiming to find ways to remove the political and financial embargo crippling Palestine, resume the peace process and end violence in the region.


He will meet with Chinese leaders, especially Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, to discuss the situation in the Middle East and find ways to expand bilateral ties.


Dalai Lama in Australia


Beijing yesterday slammed Australia for allowing the Dalai Lama to visit the country and engage in activities harmful to the integrity of China, despite previous remonstrations.


"The Dalai Lama is not a simple religious figure. He is a long-time political exile engaged in separatist activities and destroying national unity," Qin said.


The Chinese government opposes any country that recklessly permits the Dalai Lama to engage in secessionist activities on their territories, Qin added.


Child labor


The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG) has launched an investigation amidst accusations that Chinese factories are using child labor to manufacture official 2008 Games merchandise, Qin said.


BOCOG has very strict labor rights and social responsibility requirements for factories that are contracted to make licensed Olympic products.


"If employment regulations are found to have been violated, BOCOG will deal with the cases seriously," he said.


Date for six-party talks not fixed


Qin revealed that no resumption date had been set for the six-party talks but that China would continue pushing forward for a swift return to the negotiating table.


Qin's comments came as Russia offered its assistance in unfreezing North Korean funds from a Macao bank, a statement that received warm appreciation from the US government, according to US Treasury Department spokeswoman Molly Millerwise on Monday.


UN General Assembly president to visit China


Sheika Haya Rashed Al Khalifa, president of the 61st session of the United Nations General Assembly will pay an official visit to China from June 19 to 24, said Qin.


While in Beijing, Sheika Haya will attend the tenth meeting of the International Association of Economic and Social Councils and Similar Institutions, said Qin.


Sheika Haya will soon leave his duties, to be replaced by former Macedonia Foreign Minister Srgjan Kerim, who was elected in May as president of the 62nd session of the UN General Assembly which will convene in September.


(China Daily, Xinhua News Agency June 13, 2007)

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