​Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lin Jian’s Regular Press Conference on July 10, 2024

2024-07-10 20:21

AFP: The NATO Summit opened in Washington, DC. What does China anticipate about the summit?

Lin Jian: China’s position on NATO is consistent. We firmly oppose NATO acting beyond its characterization as a regional defensive alliance, inserting itself into the Asia-Pacific to incite confrontation and rivalry, and disrupting the prosperity and stability in this region. We urge NATO to make real contribution to world peace, stability and security. 

China Review News: On July 8, South China Sea Ecological Center and South China Sea Development Research Institute of China’s Ministry of Natural Resources released a Survey Report on the Damage to Coral Reef Ecosystem by Illegally Grounded Military Vessel at Ren’ai Jiao. The report mentioned that the Philippine warship has gravely damaged the diversity, stability, and sustainability of the coral reef system. It’s reported that in a statement released yesterday, National Task Force—West Philippines Sea said it’s China who has been found to have caused irreparable damage to corals in the South China Sea. What’s China’s response?

Lin Jian: Ren’ai Jiao is part of China’s Nansha Qundao. China attaches great importance to the protection of the coral reef system of Nansha Qundao and the surrounding marine environment of its islands and reefs, and has taken effective measures in this regard. The report makes it clear that the Philippines’ illegally grounded military vessel and relevant human activities are primarily responsible for the damage to Ren’ai Jiao’s coral reef ecosystem. This is a conclusion based on facts and scientific investigations. We continue to ask the Philippines to remove the illegally grounded warship at Ren’ai Jiao to stop damaging the ecosystem at Ren’ai Jiao.

BBC:  Just a follow-up question to the matter of the ship grounded in the South China Sea. The Philippines’ government has denied these allegations and also said that actually China has hurt the marine environment by dredging sand and dredging coral. Does the Chinese government have a response to these comments from the Philippine government?

Lin Jian: As I just said, China attaches great importance to the protection of the coral reef system of Nansha Qundao and the surrounding marine environment of its islands and reefs, and has taken effective measures in this regard. You might have seen the Investigation and Assessment Report on Marine Ecology and Environment Status of Huangyan Dao just released by relevant government agencies, which is another example of how serious China is about looking after the ecological environment of Huangyan Dao area. The results of the investigation and assessment showed an excellent environmental quality of Huangyan Dao area, which speaks to China’s effort and effectiveness in protecting the marine ecosystem.

TV Asahi: The on-going China-Belarus joint army training is held near Poland at the doorstep of NATO. There has been comment that this is a provocation to NATO. What is the Foreign Ministry’s comment?

Lin Jian: China’s Ministry of National Defense has released information about the training. Let me say that the joint army training is part of the annual cooperation plan between China and Belarus. It is normal military exchange and cooperation between China and Belarus and within international law and common practices, and it’s not directed at any particular country.

Reuters: The Philippines’ government has expressed concerns about the route of the Shandong aircraft carrier passing through the Balintang Channel close to the Philippines on its way to drills in the Western Pacific. I believe the normal route is through the Bashi Channel. The question is: Is there a reason that it took that particular route? And is there any response to the concerns raised by the Philippines?

Lin Jian: I’m not aware of the specifics you mentioned. I’d refer you to competent authorities.

AFP: An independent investigation concluded that WADA showed no favoritism toward China in its handling of the case involving 23 Chinese swimmers who tested positive in a drug test. What’s your response?

Lin Jian: China trusts the conclusion reached by the independent Swiss prosecutor and supports WADA’s independent, fair, consistent and effective governance worldwide. This non-existent case that the US keeps selling and the attacks it hurls at the international organization are all about degrading fine Chinese athletes and obstructing their participation in the Paris Olympics. As far as we are concerned, the US side is in no position to judge and interfere in the global anti-doping governance system and China’s anti-doping effort. We urge the US to respect the Olympic spirit, abide by international law and basic norms governing international relations, stop feeding the world with false narratives and stop manipulating perceptions by turning everything political.

BBC: I don’t think this was asked yesterday about the Australian government allegations regarding cyberattacks emanating from China. Does China’s government have a response to that?

Lin Jian: I answered the question yesterday, which you may refer to.