ASEAN-China statement calls for effective implementation of DOC on South China Sea

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Vientiane, Sep 8 The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China issued a statement here on Wednesday, calling for full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC).

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In a chairman's statement issued at the 19th ASEAN-China Summit, the two sides underlined the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security and freedom of navigation in, and overflight above, the South China Sea, Xinhua news agency reported.

"We welcomed the recent adoption of the Joint Statement by the Foreign Ministers of ASEAN Member States and China on the Full and Effective Implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC). We stressed the importance of the full and effective implementation of the DOC in its entirety," read the document.

Meanwhile, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said that China is willing to work with the ASEAN countries in dispelling interference, and properly handling the South China Sea issue according to the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) and dual-track approach.

With the joint efforts from China and the ASEAN members, the situation in the South China Sea is moving towards a positive direction, and DOC has been proved an effective guideline in the region, Xinhua news agency quoted him as saying.

Over the past more than a decade, the DOC principle of having direct talks between concerned parties over their disputes has been significant for China and the ASEAN nations to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea, said the premier.

Presently, China is working with the ASEAN nations to formulate a Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC).

The Chinese leader said the peace and stability in the South China Sea is highly related to the prosperity and development of countries in the region.

IANS

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