China urges US to abide by neutrality on Diaoyu islands

Updated: 2013-09-18 20:48


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BEIJING - China on Wednesday urged the United States to "strictly abide by" its commitment to neutrality on the Diaoyu Islands issue.

"We hope the US will abide by its commitment, speak and act cautiously, maintain the regional peace, stability and the overall situation of Sino-US relations with concrete action," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei.

Hong made the remarks at a regular press briefing in response to comments by US State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki on the sovereignty disputes.

Psaki said on Tuesday that US position on the Diaoyu Islands has not changed, and it does not take sides on the sovereignty of these islands.

During his meeting last week in Washington with Japan's New Komeito Party chief Natsuo Yamaguchi, US Deputy Secretary of State William Burns reportedly reaffirmed US backing for Japan in its dispute with China" over the Diaoyu Islands, Japanese news agency Kyodo quoted a lawmaker in Yamaguchi's delegation as saying.

"We have noted the US remarks," said Hong, stressing that the Diaoyu Islands and the adjacent islets are China's inherent territories. China's stance on the Diaoyu Islands issue is clear and consistent.

With regard to why there appeared fewer anti-Japanese parades this year, compared to September last year, the spokesman said Japan's illegal "purchase" of Diaoyu Islands last year was an important reason.

"Japan's illegal 'purchase' invaded China's territory and sovereignty, challenged the international order left from the World War II, which evoked Chinese people's rage," Hong said.

He urged Japan to face up to history and reality regarding the Diaoyu Islands issue, to stop violating China's territory and sovereignty, control and solve relevant issues with concrete actions, and remove obstacles hindering the development of China-Japan relations.