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Defense minister calls for mutual security in Asia

2014-11-22 09:17 Global Times Web Editor: Si Huan

China's defense minister on Friday called for further strengthening of dispute and crisis management mechanisms and boosting regional security architecture to achieve mutual trust and win-win outcomes in the Asia-Pacific region.

"We call for further strengthening of dispute management procedures to improve our ability to cope with crises," Defense Minister Chang Wanquan said in a speech at the Fifth Xiangshan Forum attended by senior security officials and scholars from Central Asian and Asia-Pacific countries in Beijing.

Chang also called for more defense exchanges and cooperation to bolster strategic mutual trust, and spoke of the necessity of constructing a regional security mechanism to foster a stronger sense of a community of common destiny.

Stressing that China is determined to promote the modernization of its national defense and effectively safeguard its national sovereignty, security and development interests, Chang emphasized that China is also obliged to work together with other countries to cope with non-traditional security threats, including terrorism and extreme natural disasters.

China has engaged in a series of territorial disputes with countries including Japan, Vietnam and the Philippines in the East China Sea and South China Sea.

"In most cases, in the East China Sea, it is not navies that are operating close to one another, it's the coast guards, the maritime patrols, those are organizations that I believe also should develop paths of communications and protocols that can be used to bring the temperature down," Gary Roughead, former chief of US naval operations, told the Global Times on Friday while commenting on China's disputes with Japan in the East China Sea over the Diaoyu Islands.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has previously proposed a call for common, comprehensive, and sustainable security in Asia, which China has been implementing and wants others to participate, said Chang.

Military spending in Asia has been growing in the past few years along with its increasing influence on the global economy. Building a regional security framework that could provide smooth channels for crisis management and dialogue to adapt to military modernization is of great significance, such as the array of new economic cooperation concepts and frameworks proposed at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit two weeks ago, said observers and officials.

China and the US have also signed a military cooperation mechanism recently, which requires each country to notify the other of major military activities.

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