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China rejects Clinton’s criticism over Syria

Foreign ministry official says suggestion that Beijing and Moscow should pay a price for supporting Assad is ‘totally unacceptable’

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius behind her, in Paris in July. (AP/Brendan Smialowski)
US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius behind her, in Paris in July. (AP/Brendan Smialowski)

BEIJING (AP) — China has denied criticism by US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton that it is hampering efforts to end the Syrian conflict by supporting President Bashar Assad’s government.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said in a statement Saturday that Clinton’s remarks were “totally unacceptable” and that China has contributed greatly to the cause of Syrian peace.

He said China has wide international support for its “just and constructive” stance on Syria.

Clinton said at a recent conference on Syria that Russia and China should pay a price for supporting the Assad regime.

Neither Moscow nor Beijing attended the conference. The two countries have twice blocked UN condemnations of Syria’s government and last weekend worked to water down a transition plan by international envoy Kofi Annan.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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