By Patricia Lourdes Viray
MANILA, Philippines — US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson irked Beijing in his recent comment that China is using its economic powers to buy its way out of problems.
"China is a significant economic and trading power, and we desire a productive relationship, but we cannot allow China to use its economic power to buy its way out of other problems, whether it’s militarizing islands in the South China Sea or failure to put appropriate pressure on North Korea," Tillerson said in Sydney.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry, on the other hand, reiterated that China and Southeast Asian countries have been making efforts to jointly uphold peace and stability in the disputed South China Sea.
Beijing also stressed that it has been pushing for the peaceful settlement of the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue.
"We hope relevant parties can fully respect and support regional countries’ efforts to safeguard peace and stability in the South China Sea and play a constructive role in this regard, rather than the opposite," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said on Monday.
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