|Wang Guanzhong (R), deputy chief of the General Staff of the People's Liberation Army (PLA), meets with U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel in the ongoing Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, May 31, 2014. The establishment of a new model of China-U.S. relations requires the two countries to respect each other and treat each other as equals, Wang Guanzhong said here Saturday. (Xinhua/Then Chih Wey)|
SINGAPORE, May 31 -- The establishment of a new model of China-U.S. relations requires the two countries to respect each other and treat each other as equals, a senior Chinese officer said here Saturday.
However, the speech made by U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel went against the construction of this model, Wang Guanzhong, deputy chief of the General Staff of the People's Liberation Army (PLA), told the media after Hagel gave a keynote speech in the ongoing Shangri-La Dialogue. "When building this new type of China-U.S. relations, friction, or even conflicts may emerge. As the two major countries in the world, contradictions and differences are inevitable. The key is to face and address the problems," Wang said.
In his speech, Hagel made groundless accusations against China on the sovereignty over the South China Sea, saying"China has undertaken destabilizing, unilateral actions asserting its claims in the South China Sea".
He also pledged to keep selling weapons and providing military assistance to the U.S. "allies and partners" in a bid to "build a cooperative regional architecture".
Responding to Hagel's accusations, Wang said that China and the United States need to expand the common interests and narrow differences, and eliminate misunderstanding and miscalculation in order to build the new model of relationship.
China is always making efforts in line with these principles while the moves of the United States mentioned by Hagel go contrary to them, Wang said. "Even so, I still have full confidence in the future of the new model of China-U.S. relations."
During a meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Barack Obama last year, the two sides reached the consensus of building a new model of major-country relationship based on mutual respect and win-win cooperation.
In the speech, Hagel also underscored the importance of developing the new type of major-country relationship, saying that the U.S.-China military-to-military dialogue has made and will continue to make progress although it still "has a long way to go" .
Hagel said that the United States supports sustained exchanges with China on cyber issues.
China and the United States have recently been at odds over cyber security issue. The U.S. side announced the indictment against five Chinese military officers on allegations of cyber theft this month.
China lodged protests with the U.S. side following the announcement, urging the United States to immediately correct its mistake and withdraw the indictment.
The Shangri-La Dialogue, organized by the London-based think tank International Institute for Strategic Studies, is one of the key events for defense professionals in the region to exchange views on security issues.