China says it wants smooth military ties with Trump

November 30, 2016 5:44 AM EST

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump gestures to the news media as he appears outside the main clubhouse at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, U.S., November 20, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar


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BEIJING (Reuters) - China said on Wednesday it wanted to develop smooth military-to-military ties with the new U.S. administration of Donald Trump.

While the world's two largest economies are frequently at odds over issues like the disputed South China Sea, both have been trying to improve trust between their armed forces to reduce the risk of misunderstanding in any encounters.

This month, China and the United States staged a three-day humanitarian relief military drill as part of that trust-building exercise.

New concern looms with Trump's election as U.S. president. He lambasted China on the campaign trail and has suggested Japan and South Korea be allowed to develop nuclear weapons.

Asked about Trump's election, Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said it went without saying there were tensions in the military relationship and China hoped the United States would respect its core interests and concerns.

"China is willing to work hard together with the defense department of the next U.S. government to promote the healthy and stable development of military-to-military relations," Yang told a monthly news briefing.

Trump will take over as president in January.

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; editing by Robert Birsel)



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