CNO Visits China, Underscores Importance of Professional Interaction at Sea
(Source: US Navy; issued Jan 15, 2019)
NANJING, China --- Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John Richardson visited China and met with senior Chinese defense officials, Jan. 13 to 16, to discuss professional interactions at sea, specifically addressing risk reduction and operational safety measures.

Richardson visited the People's Liberation Army (Navy) (PLA(N)) Command College for a roundtable discussion, where CNO underscored the importance of lawful and safe operations around the globe. He also reiterated that U.S. forces will continue to operate wherever international law allows--a point emphasized by U.S. officials during recent visits to Asia.

"The U.S. Navy will continue to conduct routine and lawful operations around the world, in order to protect the rights, freedoms and lawful uses of sea and airspace guaranteed to all," said Richardson. "This will not change. Enhancing the prosperity of all is the direct result of a secure and orderly maritime domain.”

Richardson began the visit in Beijing where he met with PLA(N) Commander Vice Adm. Shen Jinlong; the two heads of navy had frank and substantive conversations on the importance of operating safely, in accordance with international law. They also discussed future opportunities for the two navies to engage.

"It important for all military, law enforcement, and civilian vessels and aircraft, including those in the PLA Navy, the Chinese Coast Guard, and the People’s Armed Forces Maritime Militia, to operate in a safe and professional manner, in accordance with international law," said Richardson. "Consistent operations and behavior are critical to preventing miscalculation.”

This is Richardson's second visit to China as the chief of naval operations.

The two admirals met previously at the International Seapower Symposium, hosted by Richardson in Newport, R.I. and have held three discussions via video teleconference.

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Senior Chinese Military Official Meets with Chief of US Naval Operations
(Source: China Military Online; issued Jan 15, 2019)
BEIJING --- General Li Zuocheng, Member of China’s Central Military Commission (CMC) and Chief of the CMC Joint Staff Department, met with Chief of US Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson in Beijing on Tuesday.

During the meeting, General Li said that 40 years of China-US diplomatic relations have proved that the two countries share much more common interests than contradictions and disputes, and cooperation is the best choice for both sides. The military relationship between the two countries is the essential part of China-US relations, and leaders of the two countries value it very much and have provided important guidance for its development.

Li hoped that the two militaries should respect each other, enhance mutual trust, strengthen communication, manage and control risks and try to promote the military-to-military relations as a stabilizer for the two countries’ relationship.

Admiral Richardson said that the US attaches great importance to developing constructive and results-oriented military relations between two countries. The US is willing to work with China to strengthen high-level exchanges between the two militaries, make good use of the existing communication and dialogue channels, enhance mutual understanding, reduce misunderstandings and misjudgments, manage and control the risks of disagreement.

Both sides also exchanged opinions on such issues as Taiwan and the South China Sea. General Li Zuocheng stressed that Taiwan issue is China’s internal affair, bears on China's core interests and the national feelings of the Chinese people, and allows no external interference. If someone tries to split Taiwan from China, the Chinese military will do whatever it takes to safeguard national reunification, national sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Admiral Richardson commenced his visit to China on January 13 at the invitation of Commander of the Chinese PLA Navy Vice Admiral Shen Jinlong.

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