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China reiterates "indisputable" sovereignty over South China Sea islands

Updated: 05 07 , 2013 18:50
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BEIJING, July 30 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese Defense Ministry official Friday said China had "indisputable sovereignty" over islands in the South China Sea and the surrounding waters, one week after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton talked of U.S. "national interests" in the area.

Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said at a press conference that China would push for the resolution of differences regarding the South China Sea with "relevant countries" through dialogue and negotiations and objected to having the issue internationalized.

China would respect the liberty of ships and aircraft from "relevant countries" traversing the South China Sea in accordance with international laws, Geng said.