(Tokyo Shimbun: January 20, 2016 – p. 6)
Chinese Ambassador to Japan Cheng Yonghua delivered a speech in Tokyo on Jan. 19. He commented on North Korea’s nuclear test on Jan. 6 during a Q&A session after his speech. He said: “This is in violation of UN Security Council resolutions and we support efforts to respond to it accordingly. At the same time, the resolution must serve the causes of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, nuclear nonproliferation, and peace and stability in Northeast Asia.” He thus indicated that while a sanctions resolution is necessary, North Korea should not be driven into a corner.
With regard to the international community’s expectations for China to persuade North Korea, Cheng stated: “This is not China’s responsibility alone. We must make efforts together with the other participants in the Six Party Talks,” calling for the involvement of Japan and other concerned countries.
Regarding China’s construction of artificial islands in the South China Sea, Cheng explained: “The reclamation work is for civilian purposes and is in line with public interest. They will be opened to other countries in the region after completion.”