Premier says respects Ukraine integrity, won't be drawn on Crimea

2015-03-15 07:10:55 GMT2015-03-15 15:10:55(Beijing Time)  Agencies

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Sunday that his government respected the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, but would not be drawn on whether China considers Crimea to be Ukraine's or Russia's.

"On the issue of Ukraine, China has adopted an objective and just position. We respect Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity," Li told a news conference at the end of the annual meeting of parliament, adding that he had recently told this to Ukraine's president.

"At the same time, the Ukraine issue has added to the complexity of the geopolitical situation and has affected the process of the global economic recovery. We still hope that this issue can be resolved via dialogue, negotiations and consultations," Li added.

"As for Crimea, there are complicated contributing factors. We also hope that it can be resolved politically via dialogue and hope that neighbors can peacefully coexist," he said, when asked about China's position on who owns Crimea.

Nonetheless, Chinese officials have said that Western powers should take into consideration Russia's legitimate security concerns over Ukraine.

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