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Top U.S., Chinese officials reaffirm goal of Korean Peninsula denuclearization: White House

All News 01:40 July 26, 2016

WASHINGTON, July 25 (Yonhap) -- U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice and Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi held talks in Beijing and agreed on the "shared goal of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," the White House said Monday.

Rice's visit to China drew attention as it came amid heightened tensions between the two countries after an international tribunal rejected China's territorial claims to most of the South China Sea in a victory for the Philippines and other Southeast Asian nations locked in maritime disputes with Beijing.

It also came after South Korea and the United States announced a joint decision to deploy a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense battery in the South to better defend against growing nuclear and missile threats from North Korea.

China has strongly protested both the South China Sea ruling and the THAAD deployment decision.

Rice and Yang held "candid, in-depth, and strategic conversations" and agreed that bilateral cooperation stands at unprecedented levels and affirmed the need to build on past gains, National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.

"They reiterated their agreement on the shared goal of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," Price said. "Ambassador Rice and State Councilor Yang agreed on the importance of managing differences constructively, and, in that context, Ambassador Rice outlined U.S. views on human rights, maritime issues, and the treatment of U.S. businesses and non-governmental organizations operating in China."

Rice also held "fruitful" talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, noting "with satisfaction the substantial progress in the development of bilateral relations through deepened cooperation in areas of overlapping interest and agreed on the value of forthright and constructive management of our differences," according to the statement.

Rice also held meetings with Central Military Commission Vice Chairman Fan Changlong and Central Politics and Law Commission Secretary Meng Jianzhu, the statement said.

jschang@yna.co.kr
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