CHINA Chinese FM urges ASEAN cooperation to cope with common security challenges

CHINA

Chinese FM urges ASEAN cooperation to cope with common security challenges

Xinhua

08:22, August 07, 2021

BEIJING, Aug. 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi Friday urged ASEAN countries to practice real multilateralism and enhance solidarity and cooperation to maintain regional peace and stability and jointly respond to their common security challenges.

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi. (Photo: Xinhua)

It came as Wang attended the foreign ministers' meeting of the 28th ASEAN Regional Forum via video link.

Wang said the region should consolidate the defense against the COVID-19 and jointly respond to the challenges brought by the pandemic. He noted China has, to date, provided 460 million doses of COVID vaccines to other Asian countries, including more than 190 million doses to ASEAN countries.

He called for strengthening multilateral cooperation to jointly respond to non-traditional security challenges, as well as issues concerning extreme climate, terrorism, cross-border crime, and cybersecurity, among others.

Wang urged maintaining the centrality of ASEAN to jointly counter geopolitical confrontation. He also urged preventing certain major powers outside the region from promoting new regional strategies.

"There should be no more 'lecturers' or 'saviors.' The destiny of each country should lie in the hands of these countries themselves, and the future of the region should be jointly created by all countries in the region," added Wang.

He said ASEAN countries should uphold the principle of non-interference in other countries' internal affairs and jointly respond to the challenge of power politics. He added countries should not wantonly meddle in other countries' internal affairs or seek their selfish geopolitical agenda under the pretext of democracy.

Wang also called on ASEAN countries to continue the dialogue for peace to respond to the challenges of regional hotspot issues. "China is ready to conclude the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC) that is effective, substantive and in line with international laws, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea."

Expounding on China's stance concerning the South China Sea issue, Wang said interference by countries outside the region constituted the biggest threat to peace and stability in the South China Sea, and the abuse of "freedom of navigation" should be resisted by countries in the region.

Concerning the Korean Peninsula issue, Wang said the joint military drills by the United States and the Republic of Korea fall short of a constructive move under the current circumstances.

China will continue to support advancing denuclearization of the Peninsula in a balanced way and establishing peace mechanisms to strive for the political settlement of the issue, Wang added.

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