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Wednesday, August 03, 2011

China willing to participate in space diplomacy

Wang Xiaoying, secretary-general of China Arms Control and Disarmament Association, offers an OpEd in The China Daily providing insight as to the Chinese view on space-related diplomacy and arms control.

"During the first decade of this century, China achieved many a breakthrough in outer space technology such as launching manned space flights, performing spacewalk, establishing the Beidou navigation system, and conducting anti-satellite and anti-ballistic missile tests. Stung by the financial crisis, the US, however, has been forced to restrict the development of its outer space technology and end its space shuttle program. These can be seen as a setback for US space technology development," the secretary-general of the association writes.

"Until now, international laws and rules of conduct have been laid out on navigation and traffic on land and sea, and in the air. But since human activities in space are becoming increasingly frequent, it is in the interest of all countries to establish a new framework of international laws on and norms for the use of outer space."

"That Washington wants to establish dialogue with Beijing on space shows that the US is concerned about the direction and intention of China's space strategy. China should understand the US' concern and respond openly and confidently. China has always wanted dialogue and opposed confrontation, so it will never reject an offer of dialogue. But the dialogue should be based on equality and mutual respect," Wang Xiaoying says in the OpEd.

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