00:49 GMT +324 October 2019
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    Chinese Premier Li Keqiang delivers the work report during the opening session of the National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Thursday, March 5, 2015

    China Respects Ukraine’s Territorial Integrity – Premier

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    Chinese Prime Minister said Beijing respected Ukraine's territorial integrity.

    BEIJING (Sputnik) — China respects Ukrainian territorial integrity, Li Keqiang, the head of the Chinese Cabinet, said Sunday.

    “China adheres to the position of objectivity and fairness with regard to the Ukrainian problem. We respect the independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine,” Li said at a Sunday press conference in Beijing.

    He added Biejing hoped that the crisis in Ukraine and the Crimean issue would eventually be resolved through dialogue.

    Monday will mark the first anniversary of the Crimean referendum, which found that over 96 percent of the ethnic Russian majority peninsula was in favor of reunifying with Russia. A treaty on reunification was signed between Crimea and the Kremlin on March 18.

    Answering a question on whether China considered Ukraine's former republic of Crimea a part of Russia or Ukraine, the prime minister said that, "this problem is rooted in many complex factors. We also hope that this problem will be resolved through dialogue."

    Until now, Beijing has been reluctant to speak out on Crimea's controversial reunification with Russia, after it drove a wedge between Russia and the West. Last year saw China and its neighbor strengthen their cooperation, specifically on energy deliveries.

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    Li Keqiang, China, Crimea, Ukraine
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