World / Asia-Pacific

'No reason' to delve into ruling at summit

(China Daily) Updated: 2016-07-12 08:00

The South China Sea issue should not be dragged into a major summit between Asian and European leaders in Mongolia, a senior Chinese diplomat said on Monday in Beijing.

The 11th Asia-Europe Meeting, or ASEM summit, scheduled for Friday and Saturday, is not an appropriate venue to discuss the issue, which has no direct link to the meeting, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Kong Xuanyou told a news conference.

"It is a false argument to claim that the South China Sea situation has affected regional stability," Kong said, one day ahead of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague's scheduled release of a ruling regarding the South China Sea disputes.

"There is no reason to bring the issue to ASEM citing 'freedom of navigation' and security interests as causes of concern," Kong said.

The official said there was no plan to discuss the issue at the meeting and that it should not be put on the agenda.

Kong said Premier Li Keqiang will pay a two-day visit to Mongolia on Wednesday, before addressing the ASEM Summit of Heads of State and Government in Ulaanbaatar to expound on China's views and proposals to enhance dialogue and cooperation between the two continents.

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