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Clinton declines comment on China espionage case
OSLO (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declined to comment on Friday on the arrest of a Chinese state security official suspected of spying for the United States, saying only that the two countries continued to cooperate on many issues.
The official, an aide to a vice minister in China's security ministry, was detained early this year and accused of passing information to the United States for several years on China's overseas espionage activities, three sources earlier told Reuters.
Sources said both countries had kept the case quiet for several months to prevent a fresh crisis in relations.
"I am not going to comment on the report you just cited," Clinton told a reporter at a news conference.
Asked if there were any issues that had arisen in recent months that would prevent the United States and China from cooperating on matters of mutual interest, she replied: "The answer is no."
"We have a very important, comprehensive relationship with China that is inclusive of a very broad range of important concerns. We cooperate on many areas ... That doesn't mean we agree on every issue, because we certainly do not," she added.
Clinton said the two countries' relationship had hit problems from time to time, but it was in their mutual interest to maintain the link.
"The goal for our relationship with China is to ensure that we defy history," Clinton said. "It has never happened that an established, preeminent power, and a rising power, have been able to find a way to not only coexist but cooperate ... We intend to make history with our relationship with China."
(Reporting By Arshad Mohammed; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
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