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Monday, 17 December, 2001, 13:26 GMT
China voices fears over ABM treaty

Chinese officials have stressed to US diplomats the importance of safeguarding the disarmament system and global stability, following the American decision to withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty.

China has been critical of the American move - correspondents say it regards the ABM treaty as a cornerstone of international stability.

A Chinese foreign ministry statement said it hoped the US would take into account the opinion of the majority of the world's nations.

It added the two sides had agreed to continue a dialogue on the issue of strategic stability.

The talks, in Beijing, follow a telephone conversation last week between US President George W Bush and Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

Chinese media quoted Mr Jiang as telling him that China was willing to work with other countries to safeguard world peace in the wake of the US decision.

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Professor Yan Xue Tong, Xinhua University
"The main concern is that this will increase military suspicion"
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