The foreign ministers of China and the United States agreed on Monday to further strengthen bilateral ties during a meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
Speaking to US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing said both countries should put into effect the important consensus reached by the two presidents with regard to advancing the Sino-US constructive partnership in the 21st century, make sure the Sino-US strategic dialogue proceeds well and promotes bilateral interests.
As to the Taiwan question, Li said that China appreciates the US stance of maintaining the one-China policy and opposing Taiwan "independence."
China hopes the US could abide by its commitments and handle the Taiwan question with caution, Li said.
Rice agreed with Li on promoting bilateral interests and reiterated the one-China policy.
Li and Rice also discussed other issues including Iran's nuclear issue and the humanitarian crisis in Sudan's Darfur region. Both agreed to continue consultation on the two issues.
Addressing a High-Level Meeting on Iraq on the sidelines of the 61st session of the UN General Assembly on Monday, Li said China supports the UN playing an important role in the reconstruction of Iraq.
Hoping to see an Iraq of national reconciliation, he stressed that "the Iraqi people should put the overall interests of their own above anything else, show respect for and understanding of each other, and be tolerant with and trust each other."
He also made it clear that China supports Arab states in their efforts to help achieve national reconciliation in Iraq.
The foreign minister also emphasized that China hoped for a stable and peaceful Iraq, saying "military means alone will not solve the problems, and violence or terrorism will bring no security."
Li also met Sudanese President Omar Bahir on Monday, expressing support for Sudan's efforts to maintain its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Li said China understood Sudan's concerns with regard to the UN Security Council resolution to deploy peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur region, and held the position that any deployment of UN peacekeepers in Darfur should first get Sudan's permission.
Moreover, China hoped Sudan would display flexibility over the issue in order to maintain peace and stability, Li said.
At the High-Level Meeting for Mid-term Review of the Programme for Action for Least Developed Countries (LDCs), China will provide more assistance to LDCs and Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPCs) over the next few years.
"As China's economy grows, we will involve ourselves more in South-South co-operation and do more to support LDCs. In the next few years, we will increase the scale of assistance to LDCs and HIPCs," Li said.
According to Li, China has provided assistance or grants to 49 LDCs on more than 1,700 occasions, cancelled 172 debts of 36 LDCs, and given tariff-free treatment to some exports from LDCs who have diplomatic ties with China.
According to the UN, there are a total of 50 LDCs in the world, 34 of which are in Africa. There are 14 LDCs in Asia and the Pacific region and the other two are located in Western Asia and the Caribbean.
Source: China Daily