China: Tensions in Gulf region should be solved through dialogue

China urges all parties concerned to properly resolve differences and conflicts through dialogue, said a spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs as tensions in the Middle East rose following an attack on oil tankers.

The remarks of Geng Shuang came after the United States accused Iran of targeting two tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, escalating tensions across the region and sending world oil prices soaring. Tehran "categorically" rejected the accusations.

The incident came a month after four ships carrying oil were damaged in an attack off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, which Washington also blamed on Iran. Tehran also denied any involvement.

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Tensions surge as U.S. accuses Iran of attacking tankers

China hopes that relevant parties can jointly safeguard regional peace, stability and development. It serves both the interests of countries in the region and the international community, said Geng.

Regarding cooperation with Gulf countries, Geng stressed that China will continue to uphold its energy security and protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese enterprises under the framework of international law.

China, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, has always been firmly opposed to unilateral sanctions and the so-called long-arm jurisdiction, Geng noted, adding that China will continue to work with influential countries to contribute to the peace and stability in the region.

(Cover: Fire and smoke billow from a tanker said to have been attacked in the waters of the Gulf of Oman, June 13, 2019. /VCG Photo )