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Malaysia, China To Launch Bilateral Dialogue On Maritime Issues

20.06.2024 16:27

Chinese Premier Li visited Malaysia from Tuesday to Thursday on last leg of regional tour.

China and Malaysia have agreed to launch a bilateral dialogue to resolve maritime disputes and maintain peace and stability in the disputed South China Sea, said a joint statement by Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim and Chinese Premier Li Qiang on Thursday.

The statement came after Wednesday's bilateral meeting between the two leaders. Li visited Malaysia from Tuesday to Thursday on the last leg of a regional tour that also took him to Australia and New Zealand.

The two countries emphasized the importance of maintaining peace security and stability in the South China Sea, agreed to resolve disputes by peaceful means, through friendly consultations and negotiations in accordance with the universally recognised principles of international law including the 1982 UN Convention on the law of the sea, according to the statement.

China and Malaysia also extended the visa-free policy until the end of 2025 and 2026, respectively.

China claims most of the South China Sea as its sovereign territory, but is opposed by other Southeast Asian states including Malaysia.

- China a 'true friend'

Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said Kaula Lumpur considers Beijing a "true friend" as conflicting issues are pursued in an atmosphere of "close friendship and mutual understanding"

"Of course there are conflicting issues, but they are pursued in an atmosphere of close friendship and mutual understanding of the views, opinions and firm stances of both countries," Anwar said in a post on X after a luncheon in Kuala Lumpur attended by Li.

"I took advantage of the stage this morning to express my highest appreciation to the Chinese business community as well as Malaysia in cooperating closely in various fields with the meaning of Malaysia-China friendly relations," he said.

"Malaysia as a neutral country and has the ability to cooperate with any country, including China, in addition to ensuring that the relationship is meaningful and brings benefits to the people," he added. "To Malaysians, China is a true friend." -



 
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