March 22, 2018

Wang raps Kono's remarks on South China Sea issue

13 August 2017, 11:38 | Opal Carroll

Alan Cayetano Foreign Secretary of the Philippines.--AFP

Alan Cayetano Foreign Secretary of the Philippines.--AFP

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono (6-L) joins foreign ministers and representatives of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) in the ASEAN-Japan Ministerial Meeting of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings in Manila, Philippines August 6, 2017.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said Washington wants eventually to talk to North Korea, but thinks discussions would not be productive if Pyongyang comes with the intention of maintaining its nuclear weapons.

Wang congratulated ASEAN for its 50th anniversary, saying China is happy for ASEAN's development and achievements while expressing best wishes for ASEAN's better and faster development in the next 50 years.

Asean ministers are now meeting in Manila for the 50 ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting.

The 10 foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations also mentioned late Sunday in their 46-page statement a vague reference to an worldwide arbitration ruling previous year that invalidated China's historical claims to virtually all of the strategic waterway.

Kono, who is acquainted with Wang, a former ambassador to Japan, said at the meeting, "I became foreign minister in a very hard era when we are facing North Korean issues and various maritime issues".

The Philippines also avoided a pointed reference to the 2016 United Nations arbitral ruling that favored Manila over China.

Federal govt to spend Rs30bn on infrastructural uplift in Karachi, Hyderabad: PM
He said in Hyderabad the federal government would fund the construction of a university, besides other development projects. The PM during his interaction with the media at the airport hinted at his role to address the MQM-Pakistan's "complaints".

Japan had earlier criticised China's military build-up and reclamation work on islands in disputed areas of the South China Sea.

The meeting between Cayetano and Ri came after the foreign ministers of ASEAN's 10-member states issued a statement reiterating their "grave concern over the escalation of tensions" on the Korean Peninsula.

China's claims of sovereignty over the South China Sea were entirely rejected by a decision handed down by a court of arbitration in July past year. This has drawn criticism from China.

".It doesn't mean all differences have gone away but by focusing on the overall dynamics of the relationship, we can achieve positive progress, confidence and move forward".

The COC framework was agreed upon in May during a senior officials' meeting on the implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) in Guiyang, southwest China's Guizhou Province.

He was referring to the Australia-Japan-United States Trilateral Strategic Dialogue Ministerial Joint Statement, which called on China and the Philippines "to abide by the Arbitral Tribunal's 2016 Award in the Philippines-China arbitration, as it is final and legally binding on both parties".

One of the diplomats tells The Associated Press that Cambodia expressed concern over the issuance by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations' foreign ministers of a separate statement criticizing North Korea's two ICBM tests last month.

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