Defense Ministry spokesperson answers questions on Ukraine situation
Source: Ministry of National Defense
Editor: Wang Xinjuan
(The following English text is for reference. In case of any divergence of interpretation, the Chinese text shall prevail.)
Question: According to foreign media reports, an anonymous US official claimed that the US had warned China that "Russia was preparing to attack Ukraine" and hoped that China would dissuade Russia. Nevertheless, the Chinese side did not take this seriously. China gave the relevant information to Russia and even asked Russia to act after the 2022 Winter Olympics. What is your comment on this, please?
Answer: The so-called assertions that China had prior knowledge about, acquiesced to or tacitly supported this conflict are purely disinformation. All these claims serve only the purpose of shifting blame to and slinging mud at China. China has expressed strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition to this.
The Ukraine issue has its complex historical context and realistic factors. What is happening today is the result of the combined effect of various reasons. However, I believe we all understand which big power bears the biggest responsibility for today's crisis. China holds an objective and impartial attitude and makes independent judgment based on the merits of the matter itself. China believes that to resolve the current crisis, we must uphold the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations (UN), and respect and protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries. We must adhere to the principle of indivisible security and accommodate the legitimate security concerns of the parties involved. We must settle disputes by peaceful means through dialogue and negotiation. And we must keep in mind the long-term peace and stability of the region and put in place a balanced, effective and sustainable European security architecture .
China's approach is in sharp contrast to that of the US, who has created and shifted crisis to others, and reaped gains from it. We hope that all parties can keep the door open for dialogue, consultation and negotiation to deescalate tensions. China will continue to play a constructive role in seeking and realizing peace.
Question: According to media reports, during the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Russia discovered that the US has multiple biological labs in Ukraine. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation recently released relevant documents, accusing the US operating biological labs in Ukraine and carrying out research of biological weapons. US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland acknowledged that the US has "biological research facilities" in Ukraine and the US is working with the Ukrainian side to prevent "relevant research materials" from falling into the hands of Russian forces. According to a former official of the Security Service of Ukraine , US biological labs in Ukraine are developing biological weapons. What is your comment on this?
Answer: The Chinese side has noticed relevant reports. Biological weapons are weapons of mass destruction and biological militarization is a major issue concerning international peace and security as well as the security interests of all countries. China believes that any information and clues of biological militarization activities should be of great concern to the international community.
The US conducts more biological militarization activities than any other country in the world. It has 336 biological labs in 30 countries around the world. Domestically, the bio-lab in Fort Detrick has carried out a lot of biological militarization activities. Public disclosures say dozens of biological labs in Ukraine are in operation in accordance with the orders from the US Department of Defense. The above-mentioned activities of the US are extremely opaque and pose great security risks. Previously, rare epidemics have broken out in multiple places where US overseas biological labs are located, leading to protests and doubts in many countries. This is also an important reason why the US biological labs in Ukraine have raised widespread concern of the international community.
We have to ask what is the real intention of the US side in conducting these projects? Why hasn't the US released details of these projects? What is the relationship between the US overseas biological labs and the US Department of Defense? If the US labs in Ukraine are only engaged in scientific research and disease monitoring, why has the US Department of Defense got deeply involved in it? And what is the reason behind the consistent blocking by the US alone of the establishment of a multilateral verification mechanism under the Biological Weapons Convention over the past 20 years? The US owes the world clear answers to the five questions. On these important issues concerning principles, the US cannot simply dismiss them as "disinformation".
China was once a victim of biological weapons and has always stood for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of all weapons of mass destruction, including biological weapons. China firmly opposes the development, possession or use of biological weapons by any country under any circumstances. We believe that the purposes and objectives of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) must be strictly observed. China urges the US to respond to the concerns of the international community in an open, transparent and responsible manner, faithfully fulfill its obligations under the Convention, make a complete explanation on its biological militarization activities both at home and abroad, and accept multilateral verification.
Question: Recently, US officials have repeatedly claimed that Russia has asked China for military equipment assistance. The spokesperson from China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has denied that. What is your comment on this, please?
Answer: The so-called "China provides military assistance to Russia" is absolute disinformation. Both China and Russia have made clarifications on this matter. Recently, the US has been spreading false and malicious information targeting China on the Ukraine issue. It is a shameful action and will only let the international community see the true face of the US as a liar and trouble maker.
It should be emphasized that China's stance on the Ukraine issue is consistent and clear. We have been playing a constructive role in promoting peace talks. The top priority at the moment is for all parties to exercise restraint, cool the situation down instead of adding fuel to the fire, and work for diplomatic settlement rather than further escalate the situation. We urge the US to immediately stop smearing and making troubles, earnestly reflect on its disgraceful role in the development and evolution of the Ukraine crisis, and do something practical to ease the tensions in Ukraine.
Question: According to reports, the US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) commander recently expressed the hope that China would learn three lessons from the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine. First, if China follows Russia in waging a war against its neighbors, it is bound to be severely sanctioned by the international community; Second, as long as there is an unprovoked attack in the Indo-Pacific region, countries in the region will get united to resist; Third, given the specific terrain, it is hard for China to win a war against its neighbors. What is your comment on these?
Answer: Those who clamor to teach China a "lesson" must learn to take a lesson first. When it comes to provoking other countries and waging wars, if the US were number two in the world, no country would dare to be the number one.
As we all know, China always pursues a national defense policy that is defensive in nature and adheres to the military strategic guideline of active defense. We stay committed to building a community with a shared future with our neighbors by promoting friendship and partnership with our neighbors based on the principle of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness. Since the founding of the People's Republic of China, we have never invaded other countries, never engaged in proxy wars, never sought spheres of influence, nor participated in any military bloc confrontation. The Chinese military has long deepened practical cooperation with its counterparts of neighboring countries in various fields, proactively provided public security goods, and prudently handled hotspot and sensitive issues, playing an important role in maintaining regional peace and stability.
On peace and security, the US itself has been notorious. Since its founding, the US has frequently provoked wars overseas, exported turmoil around the world, and caused serious humanitarian disasters. It has become the largest source of global conflicts and is in no position to lecture other countries.
Question: It is reported that since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis, the DPP authority in Taiwan has been attempting to link the Ukraine issue with the Taiwan question, hyping that the Chinese mainland might take this opportunity to intensify the so-called "military pressure" on Taiwan , and instigating "anti-China activities to protect the Taiwan region". On the other hand, the DPP authority has been strengthening combat preparedness training and enhancing armament and defense capabilities. Some US and Western politicians also took the opportunity to propagate the so-called "military threat" by the mainland to Taiwan, and clamored to assist "confrontation" by providing weaponry to Taiwan. What is your comment on this, please?
Answer: First of all, it needs to be pointed out that Taiwan is not Ukraine. The Taiwan question and the Ukraine issue are different in nature. Most fundamentally, Taiwan is an inalienable part of China's territory, and the Taiwan question is purely China's internal affair with zero-tolerance of external interference. The two sides across the Taiwan Strait must be and will be reunified. It is the trend of history that can never be stopped by anyone or any force .
The DPP authority has been intensifying its collusion with external forces and making provocations to seek "Taiwan independence", in an attempt to change the fact that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one China. Such acts are the root cause for the current tension and instability across the Taiwan Strait.
Recently, the DPP authority exploited the situation in Ukraine to chase the clout and assert itself, deliberately hyped up the so-called "threat" from the mainland, raised the tone of cross-Strait confrontation and seeking "Taiwan independence", and even arrogantly clamored for war. Such attempts to seek "Taiwan independence" by relying on external forces or resorting to force are harming Taiwan and will only push Taiwan into the abyss of disasters. â€‚
It is perfectly justified for China to safeguard its national sovereignty and territorial integrity, and allow no external interference. We would like to sternly warn the DPP authority and certain external forces that seeking foreign support to gain "Taiwan independence" is a dead end, and the scheme to use Taiwan to contain China is doomed to fail. The Chinese PLA stands ready to take all necessary measures to resolutely respond to any provocative actions that endanger China's core interests or undermine the peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.
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