US to ask China to restart cyber working group

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WASHINGTON — The United States wants to restart a cybersecurity working group that China shut down after the U.S. indicted five Chinese military officers on charges of hacking into American companies’ computers to steal trade secrets.

Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Russel told The Associated Press the U.S. is ready to resume those discussions, which he described as “useful and important,” if China is. Russel said officials would raise it at the annual U.S.-China Security and Economic Dialogue in Beijing in two weeks. The dialogue will be attended by Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew.

After the indictments against the five officers were unsealed in May, Beijing pulled the plug on the group. It had been set up a year ago in what Washington viewed at the time as a diplomatic coup after President Barack Obama and China’s President Xi Jinping held a summit in California aiming to set relations between the two global powers on a positive track.

Those ties have also come under growing strain because of China’s assertive actions in the disputed South and East China seas. Russel, the top U.S. diplomat for East Asia, reiterated those concerns in an interview Thursday, saying the U.S. views it as essential that China show greater restraint and use diplomacy to manage its differences on territorial issues.

Asian nations, particularly treaty allies like Japan and the Philippines, look to the U.S. to counter China’s increasingly..

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/us-seeks-resumption-of-cyber-talks-with-china/2014/06/27/bae49a1a-fdd2-11e3-beb6-9c0e896dbcd8_story.html?wprss=rss_north-korea