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Korea-China Relations Better Than Ever

Posted November. 18, 2005 08:26,   


President Hu Jintao of China said yesterday that he supports South and North Korea’s efforts to improve inter-Korean relations and to build mutual trust through dialogue, as well as the two Koreas’ ultimate realization of self-reliant peaceful reunification.

Currently visiting Korea to attend the APEC Summit in Busan, Hu gave a speech at the Korean National Assembly yesterday. Hu’s speech, as China’s head of state, came after ten years since the former President Zhang Zemin addressed the Assembly in 1995. “China consistently believes that the two Koreas are the directly concerned parties in the reunification of the Korean Peninsula. Thus, this issue should be resolved through dialogue and negotiation between the two,” said Hu.

About Korea-China relations, Hu said the bilateral relationship has entered an unprecedentedly favorable phase. He added that the two countries have promoted a close friendship helping each other in times of great struggle to fend off foreign invasions and to achieve national independence.

Prior to his visit to National Assembly, Hu met with Korean Prime Minister Lee Hae-chan at the Shilla Hotel, Seoul. Lee expressed his concerns about the conflicts between Korea and China surrounding kimchi, saying that there have been some misunderstandings between the two. He suggested closer cooperation in order to avoid repeating this kind of problem. In response, Hu said that conflicts and confrontations must be resolved on the basis of mutual respect and equal negotiation.

Jung-Eun Lee lightee@donga.com