China foreign minister condemns Vietnam over violent riots in urgent phone call

SHANGHAI Thu May 15, 2014 7:51pm EDT

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SHANGHAI May 16 (Reuters) - China's foreign minister condemned Vietnam in an urgent phone call with the Southeast Asian country's deputy prime minister over anti-Chinese protests that have killed up to 21 people, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh in the call on Thursday night that "Vietnam bears unshirkable responsibility for the violent attacks against Chinese companies and nationals", the report said.

China also sent a working group, led by Assistant Foreign Minister Liu Jianchao, to Vietnam on Thursday to deal with the aftermath of the riots, Xinhua said.

Wang demanded Vietnam take resolute and effective measures immediately to stop violence and ensure the safety of the lives and property of Chinese nationals and companies there.

Anti-China riots broke out this week in Vietnam, killing up to 21 people. Factories perceived to have been Chinese-owned were also set alight after China towed a giant oil rig into waters claimed by both nations. (Reporting by Kazunori Takada; Editing by Paul Tait)

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