China, ROK maintain close communication on Korean Peninsula nuke issue

Updated: 2016-01-13 20:40


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China and the Republic of Korea (ROK) have maintained close communication on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, said a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson on Wednesday.

Foreign ministers of China and the ROK had a phone conservation about the situation last Friday, spokesperson Hong Lei said at a daily press briefing, adding that the heads of the two countries' delegation to the six-party talks have been in contact on the issue as well.

Other parties to the talks include the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), the United States, Russia and Japan.

Hong made the remarks in response to a question about ROK President Park Geun-hye's call on Wednesday for China to play a "necessary role" in strong sanctions on the DPRK over its recent nuclear test.

The DPRK announced last Wednesday that it had successfully carried out its first hydrogen bomb test.

"It is China's consistent and clear stance to safeguard the international non-proliferation regime and oppose nuclear tests by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea," Hong said.

China has always borne in mind the goal of promoting denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, preventing nuclear proliferation and maintaining the peace and stability of Northeast Asia, said Hong.

"This is also the common interest and common responsibility of parties concerned, including China and the Republic of Korea," he added.

Hong said China will continue to work with all parties of the six-party talks to contribute to the security and stability of the region.

When asked to comment on Park's remark that the ROK will discuss with the United States the deployment of an advanced U.S. missile defense system, dubbed the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, on the peninsula, Hong said China has been consistent and clear on the anti-missile issue.

"A country should consider other countries' safety and interests as well as the peace and stability of the whole region when seeking its own safety," he said.

The THAAD system has radar that can track multiple ballistic missiles up to 2,000 km away, a range that would reach deep into China.

Stressing that the current situation on the Korean Peninsula "is very sensitive," Hong said China hopes "countries concerned would bear the mind the big picture of maintaining regional peace and stability and handle relevant issues prudently and properly."