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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

'Respect' on Tibet, please

March 15, 2009

March 13, 2009

WASHINGTON - CHINESE Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on Thursday urged the
United States to 'respect' Beijing's position on Tibet after a row over
human rights in the Himalayan territory.

'Tibet is an inalienable part of China's territory and Tibetan affairs
are exclusively China's internal affairs,' Mr Yang told a think tank
during a visit to Washington.

'I hope that people from various sectors in the United States will
appreciate these facts, and understand and respect the Chinese people's
position of upholding state sovereignty and territorial integrity,' he said.

Yang Jiechi was speaking to a closed-door luncheon at Washington's
Center for Strategic and International Studies before a meeting with
President Barack Obama. The think tank later released footage of the
event, which was not publicly announced beforehand.

The White House said Obama voiced hope in the meeting that China would
make progress in now-stalled talks with representatives of the Dalai
Lama, Tibet's exiled spiritual leader.

China was angered after the United States voiced concern about the
situation in Tibet on the 50th anniversary this week of Beijing's bloody
clampdown on an uprising in Tibet that forced the Dalai Lama to flee
into exile.

In his address to the think tank, Mr Yang called for greater cooperation
between the United States and China on issues including the global
economic crisis and climate change.

'China and the United States have a new historic opportunity for the
development of their relations,' Yang said.

'China and the United States should and can set an example in achieving
win-win progress and making greater joint efforts for an even better
world.' -- AFP
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