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Beijing keen on talks to resolve Iran issue

[ 2010-03-10 13:04]     字号 [] [] []  
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China on Tuesday reiterated that it was best to solve the Iranian nuclear standoff through continued diplomatic effort and said there was yet room for dialogue to resolve the issue.

"Like Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi said on Sunday, the best way to solve the problem is through dialogue," spokesman Qin Gang told reporters on Tuesday.

In fact, Yang had stressed that it was China's "consistent position to uphold the international nuclear non-proliferation treaty", while holding a press conference at the Great Hall of the People on Sunday.

There has been speculation that China may, in the end, go along with fresh sanctions against Iran as some recent unconfirmed data had shown that China's imports of Iranian crude oil had fallen to a three year low in January.

Qin, however, said that the data, if accurate, had no relevance to China's political stance. "When, and how much, Chinese companies (choose to) import oil from Iran depends on commercial principles," he said.

"China imported 23 million tons of crude oil from Iran in 2009, accounting for 11 percent of its total oil import," Hua Liming, China's former ambassador to Iran, told China Daily.

Hua, however, said he hadn't seen any recent official data showing a drop in China's oil purchase from the world's second largest oil and natural gas producer.

"The key word in Yang's speech is that diplomatic efforts haven't been exhausted, and that means, as long as Iran does not shut the negotiation door completely, China will persist with talks. However, if sanctions were to be the solution in the end, China will still consider its national interest and try to minimize the damage," he said.

The US agreed with Britain, France and Germany last week on a draft proposal for a fourth round of sanctions against Iran, which were later passed on to Russia and China for comment.


1. What is the name of the foreign minister?

2. How many million tons of crude oil did China import from Iran in 2009?

3. Name the countries that agree with the US on a draft of new sanctions?


1. Yang Jiechi.

2. 23 million.

3. Britain, France, Germany.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Beijing keen on talks to resolve Iran issue

About the broadcaster:

Beijing keen on talks to resolve Iran issue

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.