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Wang Yi: South China Sea Issue Should not Affect the Overall Situation of China-ASEAN Friendly Cooperation

On June 14, 2016, when attending the press conference after the Special China-ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting, Foreign Minister Wang Yi expressed that in the spirit of mutual understanding, Foreign Ministers of ASEAN countries and I conducted in-depth discussion on the South China Sea issue, stressing that all sides should jointly well safeguard peace and stability in the South China Sea and promote regional security and prosperity. All countries reiterated that the South China Sea issue should be properly handled to prevent it from affecting the overall situation of China-ASEAN friendly cooperation. All sides agreed to comprehensively, effectively and completely implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), and actively push forward consultations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC), so as to reach the COC at an early date on the basis of consensus. Article 4 of the DOC stipulates that disputes should be resolved peacefully through friendly consultation and negotiation by sovereign states directly concerned.

Wang Yi expressed that all sides fully recognized the new progress achieved from the recently concluded Senior Officials' Meeting on the Implementation of the DOC in Ha Long Bay, Vie Nam, including that all sides agreed to accelerate the work progress so as to lay the foundation for issuing the joint declaration on the comprehensive and effective implementation of the DOC between China and the ASEAN, and implement early harvest results reaped from consultations on the COC at an early date. Those early harvest results include accelerating the formulation of guidelines on China-ASEAN senior foreign officials' hotline platforms on emergencies and others.

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