My brother pointed me to two articles about the six-party talks aimed at containing North Korea and wonders which translation of (apparently) the same Chinese sentence is correct. First, from Forbes is this version (in bold):

China's spokesman Qin said 'joint efforts' are still needed in order to achieve 'positive results' in the talks, which also include China, South Korea, Japan and Russia.

'I hope that all sides can demonstrate sincerity, flexibility and pragmatism to move forward step by step,' Qin said.

Then there's this second version from Bloomberg:

``Our impression is all parties are sincere, earnest and realistic,'' Chinese delegation spokesman Qin Gang told reporters in Beijing. ``All the parties are exchanging frank and serious views on how to promote a nuclear-free Korean peninsula.''

It may be the case that these are translations of two different quotes, but the constructions are so similar (except for the "step-by-step" phrase) that my brother's guess that they're from the same Chinese sentence is reasonable. So which is the correct translation? The meanings are quite different, and I hope all the parties involved in the talks know what is actually being said. Of course, it goes without saying that most diplospeak is utterly devoid of meaning no matter how it's translated.

My brother sends more translations. Houston Chronicle:

Qin Gang, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, also expressed optimism.

"This is a solid foundation for us to usher our talks into a stage of more in-depth discussion and make important progress," he said. "We need to show faith, confidence, resolve and patience. We have to make unremitting efforts."

CRI Online (which also has audio):

Chinese delegation spokesperson, Qin Gang says frequent bilateral consultations have been held between different parties such as between China and the U.S. and North Korea and the U.S. on the first day of the six party talks.

"One characteristic of this round of six party talks is the frequent and intense bilateral consultations between different parties. I believe this demonstrates that all the six parties have taken an active, serious and practical attitude."

China View:

All the delegations participating in the ongoing fourth round of six-party talks on Korean Peninsulanuclear issue have adopted a positive, sincere and pragmatic attitude, Qin Gang said.

"The general impression we have got is that all parties involved are positive, sincere and pragmatic in the discussions," said Qin.



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