China, Philippines to discuss South China Sea issue

Updated: 2012-01-12 20:29


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BEIJING - China and the Philippines will exchange views on the South China Sea issue over the weekend, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said Thursday.

A meeting will be held in Beijing on Saturday between China and the Philippines, Liu told reporters at a regular press briefing when responding to a question on the South China Sea dispute.

"The two sides will exchange views on the bilateral ties, the enhancement of pragmatic cooperation and other issues of common concern," said the spokesman.

"They will also exchange views on how to appropriately address the South China Sea dispute and make joint efforts to safeguard the peace and stability of the region," he added.

China is committed to neighborly and friendly cooperation with the Philippines, Liu said, adding that it is the consensus between the two nations that they should properly handle the dispute and secure the stable development of the bilateral ties.

"The channels for communication are unblocked," said the spokesman.

"China's stance on the South China Sea issue is constant and clear," he said, adding that the Chinese side holds that China and the Philippines should address the South China Sea dispute through consultation and negotiation on the basis of fully respecting history and international law.