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    Xi, Merkel discuss Korean Peninsula

    President Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed in a phone conversation on Thursday that the Korean Peninsula issue should be solved peacefully through talks.

    Xi said facts have proved time and again that eventually, the Korean Peninsula issue can only be solved through peaceful means, such as dialogue and consultation.

    The international community needs to make joint efforts to achieve a peaceful solution of the issue, Xi said.

    The president emphasized that China maintains its goal of the peninsula’s denuclearization.

    Merkel said Germany supports peaceful resolution of the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue through political means and agrees to push all relevant parties back to dialogue and negotiation.

    Germany hopes to strengthen communication and coordination with China to find a way to solve the issue peacefully as soon as possible, Merkel said.

    Xi said the significance of China-Germany cooperation has long transcended a bilateral scope and is playing an increasingly important role in maintaining world peace and stability as well as promoting common development.

    A day earlier, Xi and US President Donald Trump exchanged views on the situation.

    In a news conference in Beijing on Thursday, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said China supports the UN Security Council in responding further to the Korean Peninsula’s nuclear issue.

    “Given the new development (a DPRK nuclear test) in the situation in the peninsula, China agrees with the Security Council to make further response and take necessary steps,” Wang said.

    “China will keep close communication with all parties in a manner that is objective, just and responsible,” Wang added.

    The foreign minister said China is “resolutely opposed to” the nuclear test the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea conducted on Sunday, and urged the DPRK to “make the right decision” and “stop challenging the consensus and limit of the international community”.

    The Sunday test drew condemnation from the Security Council on Monday.

    The United States has proposed a draft resolution to seek UN sanctions that would ban all oil and natural gas exports to the DPRK, according to the Associated Press.

    Wang said any new actions the international community would take should not only deter the DPRK’s nuclear and missile programs but also help talks resume as soon as possible.

    Gao Feng, spokesman of the Ministry of Commerce said on Thursday that China will continue to handle its trade with DPRK based on principles that are conducive to the peninusla’s denuclearization and its peace and stability.

    wangqingyun@chinadaily.com.cn