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China Doesn't Support Hacker Attacks on U.S. Targets, Prime Minister Says

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After a slew of U.S. media companies reported cyber-attacks, Li Keqiang says his country has also been a victim and calls on the U.S. to stop accusing China.

China's new prime minister, Li Keqiang, has denied that China supports hackers' attacks on U.S. companies and has called on both countries to stop making "groundless accusations" about the hacking of each other's computer systems.

His comments came on the final day of China's annual meeting of parliament, after  a slew of U.S. newspapers, including the New York Times and the News Corp.-owned Wall Street Journal, reported cyber-security breaches seemingly organized out of China. They implicated hackers who may have the backing of Chinese authorities and suggested the hackers wanted to spy on journalists covering China.

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Li argued, though, that cyber-attacks are a global problem and that China has also been a prime target of hackers, the Guardian reported.

"We should not make groundless accusations against each other and spend more time doing practical things that will contribute to cyber-security," he told a news conference, according to the paper.

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Emphasizing that China does not support any cyber-attacks, he added: "This is a worldwide problem. In fact, China itself is a main target of such attacks."

Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt also has recently blamed China for being behind security breaches, calling the country the world's "most sophisticated and prolific hacker."

U.S. treasury secretary Jack Lew is expected to discuss the hacking issue during a visit to China this week.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com
Twitter: @georgszalai