The South China Sea is the "common home" of China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Tuesday, adding that both sides wish to promote peace and development in the region.
Wang made the remarks when co-chairing the 12th meeting of the China-Vietnam Steering Committee for Bilateral Cooperation with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh via video link. Wang said China appreciates Vietnam's role as the rotating chair of ASEAN.
The Chinese diplomat said the United States has been stirring up tension in the South China Sea and undermining regional solidarity out of geostrategic considerations. He called on countries in the region to be on high alert.
China and Vietnam should manage their disputes through bilateral dialogue and consultations and seek a fair and reasonable solution, he said.
The two countries should also make joint efforts with other ASEAN countries to adhere to the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and advance consultations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea, he added, stressing that countries in the region should not allow interference or disruption by external forces.
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi co-chairs the 12th meeting of the China-Vietnam Steering Committee for Bilateral Cooperation with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh via video link in Beijing, July 21, 2020. /Chinese Foreign Ministry
Minh said Vietnam is willing to work with China to jointly maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea and promote maritime cooperation and common development.
Wang thanked Vietnam for helping China fight the recent floods along the Yangtze River.
Minh stressed that Vietnam always regards developing its ties with China as a top priority of its foreign policy.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Vietnam. The two sides agreed to continue to strengthen strategic communication and promote cooperation in fighting COVID-19 and other areas so as to inject new impetus into "healthy and sustainable development" of bilateral ties, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said on its website after the meeting.