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Wang Yi Meets with Special Envoy of ROK President Lee Hae-chan 

On May 18, 2017, Foreign Minister Wang Yi met in Beijing with Special Envoy of President of the Republic of Korea (ROK) Lee Hae-chan.

Wang Yi noted that President Moon Jae-in, upon his assumption of office, sent a representative of the ROK government to attend the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, supporting President Xi Jinping’s proposal of the “Belt and Road” initiative. Today, he sent you as a special envoy to visit China, which embodies the new ROK government’s great attention to its relations with China as well as its urgent desire to improve bilateral relations as soon as possible, and China appreciates that.

2017 marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of China-ROK diplomatic relations, and under the joint efforts of both sides, bilateral relations have achieved great progress, which brings important benefits to the two peoples. However, since last year, bilateral relations have undergone unnecessary setbacks. The Chinese side hopes that the new ROK government could envisage and remove obstacles on the way forward, and bring bilateral relations back to a healthy path of development. China is willing to see the normal exchanges and cooperation between both countries.

Wang Yi comprehensively expounded China’s principle and stance on the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) issue, and asked the ROK to properly handle China’s major and reasonable concerns. Wang Yi also expressed that China is willing to make joint efforts with all parties including the ROK to take more practical and effective measures, insist on solving the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue through dialogue, and firmly safeguard the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula.

Lee Hae-chan expressed that the ROK and China are important neighbors to each other. The two sides witness close exchanges and cooperation in various fields. ROK-China relations are of great significance to the peace and prosperity of the Korean Peninsula and the Northeast Asia at large. The ROK hopes to enhance practical cooperation with China and push forward the development of bilateral strategic partnership. The country has realized the damage of the deployment of the THAAD to bilateral mutual trust and bilateral exchanges, and fully understood China’s reasonable concerns. The ROK stands ready to, with its sincerity, seek a proper way to address this issue.

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