|Play the Strong Tone of Peace, Development and Cooperation of the Times-Yang Jiechi Talks about Premier Wen Jiabao's Participation in a Series of UN Meetings|
From September 21 to 23, 2010, Premier Wen Jiabao, at invitation, attended a series of meetings in the UN headquarters, New York, including the UN high-level event on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the 65th general debate of the General Assembly. After Premier Wen concluded his visit, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi who accompanied him during the meetings introduced to the accompanying journalists the outcomes of the visit.
Yang said that Premier Wen's visit to New York is a major diplomatic event against the background of emerging changes in the world economic and political patterns. The rebound of global economy from the crisis is neither stable nor balanced. The international community has achieved major progress of implementing the MDGs in general, but the imbalance of development worldwide becomes even more serious and the international development cooperation faces new challenges. Developing countries require the international community to pay greater attention to the development issue. All countries show a stronger desire to seek peace, development and cooperation and expect the UN to play a bigger role in maintaining world peace, promoting common development and advancing international cooperation. China took a lead in the recovery from the global crisis, which has drawn worldwide attention. However, some focus of problems emerged in that process and there exist some misunderstanding and misinterpretation about China in the international community. China-US relations underwent twists and turns not long ago and therefore to steer China-US relations in the correct direction, handle the bilateral differences properly and increase mutual trust and cooperation are of great significance to enhancing the sustained and healthy progress of bilateral ties. Under such circumstances, Premier Wen, at invitation, attended the UN meetings in New York and participated in nearly 20 important meetings and activities within a short period of 48 hours. He contacted extensively and exchanged deeply with foreign national leaders, personnel from all sectors of the US society and the media and conducted intensive diplomatic activities. To sum up, Premier Wen's visit achieved fruitful outcomes in the following four aspects.
I. Enhancing the international community's objective understanding about the real China
No matter attending the UN meetings and delivering keynote speech to the welcome dinner hosted by the US friendly groups or meeting with foreign dignitaries, holding talks with personnel from all walks of life and receiving interview, Premier Wen elaborated completely and objectively China's real situation, challenges and development strategy with full sincerity. He made it clear the basic fact that China is still a developing country remains unchanged, China's basic national policy of reform and opening-up remains unchanged and China's basic principle of pursuing the road of peaceful development remains unchanged. He explained profoundly that China's peaceful development will neither hurt nor threaten anyone and China will never follow the footsteps of big powers which sought hegemony once they grew strong. China values friendship but sticks to principles and will unswervingly maintain its core national interest. On issues concerning sovereignty, reunification and territorial integrity, China will in no way concede or compromise. China's development brings opportunities to the world and a better-off China benefits the world.
The public opinion generally believes that Premier Wen gave clear and firm answers to questions about which the world has doubts, such as China's nature as a developing country, its development path and international role. Being made from the bottom of his heart and highly persuasive, his remarks have increased the international community's comprehensive and objective understanding about China and confidence in China's development.
II. Pushing the international community to jointly implement the MDGs
At the UN high-level event on the MDGs, Premier Wen made an all-round introduction about China's achievements and experience of implementing the MDGs as well as its contributions to promoting the international poverty alleviation undertaking and South-South cooperation. He raised four points of initiatives on implementing the MDGs, appealed to the international community to develop a greater sense of urgency and responsibility, give top priority to helping Africa's development and poverty eradication, continue to make the UN play a core role in the field of international development cooperation and advance the development and progress of entire mankind with tangible actions. He also announced a series of new initiatives and measures of the Chinese government to aid developing countries, including helping them improve their people's livelihood, reducing or exempting debts and strengthening financial, economic, trade, agricultural and human resources training cooperation. He especially declared that China will provide another US$200 million of grant aid to Pakistan in order to help the country with flood relief and home reconstruction, which was highly recognized by Pakistan and the international community. He also witnessed together with the Administrator of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Helen Clark the signing of memorandum of understanding on strengthening the bilateral cooperation between China and the UNDP and the joint selection of developing country by China and the UNDP for tripartite cooperation.
The international public opinion generally thinks that China has made positive contributions to the international community's efforts of realizing the MDGs on the basis of overcoming its own development difficulties and the successful experience of Chinese economic and social development is a tremendous encouragement to developing countries. China is trustworthy in word and resolute in deed. Its relevant initiatives, proposals and measures are all tangible, sincere and selfless, can stand the test of history and play a significant role in promoting international development cooperation and implementing the MDGs.
Premier Wen attended the meeting on the MDGs and AIDS and the launch ceremony of the UN Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health. It is the first time that a Chinese national leader attends the special UN meetings on AIDS and women's and children's Health, which illustrates the open and self-confident image of China and its greater attention to the dignity of people, social justice and harmony and balanced development.
When meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Premier Wen reiterated that China expects to step up its partnership with the UN and supports the leading role of the organization in implementing the MDGs, coping with major global issues and in the international affairs.
III. Demonstrating China's sound image of loving peace and maintaining stability
Yang said that Premier Wen attended the Security Council Summit for the first time, elaborated China's views on the current international security situation and noted that China will join hands with the international community to continue to support the core role of the Security Council in maintaining international peace and security.
In his speech, Premier Wen pointed out that the Chinese nation is a peace-loving nation. As a permanent member of the Security Council, China unswervingly pursues an independent foreign policy of peace, actively advocates and promotes the settlement of disputes peacefully and has played an important and constructive role on a series of major hot-spot issues, such as the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, the Iranian nuclear issue, the Middle East issue and the Sudanese issue and contributed effectively to fighting the pirates, maintaining the international nuclear non-proliferation regime and participating in the multilateral arms control and disarmament and anti-terrorism. China takes an active part in the UN peacekeeping operations and has the biggest number of participants among the Security Council permanent members.
He raised four points of proposals on the work of the Security Council under new circumstances: first, hold high the banner of peace and promote the settlement of disputes through peaceful means, which should be a basic principle of the Security Council; second, improve the working methods, increase its capacity of solving problems and enhance efficiency and effectiveness of execution, but sanctions should be used with caution; third, strengthen overall planning and coordination, eradicate the root cause of disputes and prevent conflicts from the source; fourth, highlight the priorities of solving hot-spot issues in Africa, pay more attention to the voice of Africa and respect the will and choices of African countries. Those targeted proposals point out the direction of the Security Council's work in the future. Premier Wen is the only leader of a Security Council permanent member attending the Summit while China is the only developing permanent member of the Security Council. The public opinion believes that it shows China's firm support for the UN and multilateralism and indicates that China will always stand side by side with developing countries.
IV. Promoting the healthy and stable development of China-US relations
Yang said that to promote the healthy and stable development of China-US relations is a key part of Premier Wen's visit. During the visit, Premier Wen met with President Obama in a straightforward, pragmatic and constructive atmosphere. The two leaders exchanged in-depth opinions on the bilateral relations and other issues of common concern and reached important consensus. They both indicated full confidence in the prospects of bilateral ties.
Premier Wen pointed out that the international financial crisis brought both tremendous pressure and challenges and new cooperation opportunities to the development of China and the US. The two sides should increase political mutual trust and strategic mutual trust, adhere to the mutually beneficial cooperation for win-win progress, strengthen dialogue and cooperation in the bilateral and multilateral fields, handle disputes appropriately and become partners instead of rivals. The problems faced by China-US economic and trade relations at present are structural contradictions which can only be solved step by step through careful consideration and comprehensive measures. China is willing to explore with the US the ways of conducting massive fiscal, financial, trade and investment cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and equal treatment from a long-term point of view in order to jointly maintain the international financial stability and stimulate the balanced and sustained development of China-US economic and trade relations. He stressed that China expects to keep close collaboration with the US to carefully prepare for President Hu Jintao's visit to the US next year and raise the bilateral ties to a new level.
Obama said that the incumbent US government has established positive, cooperative and all-round relations with China. It is critical to the world that the US and China join hands in tackling the international financial crisis. The two sides should reinforce strategic and economic dialogue and promote the sustainable recovery of world economy. The US encourages businesses of both countries to expand mutual investment and expects to strengthen cooperation with China on energy and environmental protection and make joint studies on the effective ways of improving the bilateral trade relations fundamentally. The US side is confident of overcoming the differences with China through dialogue, enhancing common interest and developing the cooperative relations. He is looking forward to President Hu Jintao's visit next year.
Premier Wen delivered a keynote speech entitled Work Together to Create a Bright Future of China-US Relations in the New Era to the welcome dinner hosted by the US friendly groups, stressing that the development of China-US relations is not without twists and turns but dialogue and cooperation always remain the mainstream of bilateral relations. Cooperation benefits both and fight can only hurt; mutual trust drives the bilateral relations forward and suspicion can only drag them backward. According to the public opinion, the fact that11 US friendly groups co-hosted and more than 400 US participants were present at the welcome dinner fully displays the strong desire of the US society to strengthen cooperation with China. Moving people with emotions and convincing them with reason, Premier Wen's speech received warm responses. The US participants all indicated that Premier Wen elaborated the significance of developing China-US relations from a strategic height and long-term perspective and demonstrated the correct direction of maintaining and boosting the healthy development of bilateral ties.
He also met with former US President Clinton, held talks with people from the economic, financial and academic circles of the US, received the interview of CNN and Times, exchanged in-depth opinions with the US side on China-US relations, China's domestic and foreign policy and reform and opening-up in order to increase mutual trust and clear up doubts, laying down a solid public opinion foundation for the sustained and healthy development of bilateral relations.
During the interview of accompanying journalists, Yang also said that the Japanese side illegally seized the Chinese fishermen and fishing boat before Premier Wen left Beijing for New York. The Chinese government has clearly indicated its stance repeatedly and lodged solemn representations to Japan, demanding Japan to release the fishermen and fishing boat immediately. Upon arriving at New York, Premier Wen especially made remarks on the incident when meeting the representatives of overseas Chinese, Chinese-funded institutions and students abroad. He said that the Diaoyu Islands are sacred territory of China. It is totally illegal and irrational that Japan seized the Chinese fishermen and fishing boat in waters off the Diaoyu Islands and still detains the Chinese captain. It hurt the Chinese captain and his family seriously and aroused the anger of all the Chinese people at home and abroad. Japan turned a deaf ear to the solemn representations of the Chinese side time after time and the Chinese government has to take the necessary counter-measures. He strongly urged the Japanese side to release the Chinese captain immediately and unconditionally. If Japan acts arbitrarily, China will take further actions and Japan must bear all the consequences that arise.
He noted that China-Japan relations are improved and developed thanks to years of efforts by both sides. The good momentum has been seriously damaged, for which Japan is solely responsible. The Japanese government should swiftly correct its mistake and bring the bilateral ties back on track, which complies with the fundamental interest of the two peoples and the trends of peace and cooperation in the world.
His remarks aroused keen resonance from all the Chinese people at home and abroad and waves of enthusiastic applauses broke out from overseas Chinese present at the meeting. They all indicated that the attitude of Premier Wen shows the great determination of the Chinese government and people to safeguard territorial and sovereign integrity and they are deeply moved and encouraged.
Yang said that overseas Chinese always think of the motherland in the foreign land. The UN meetings were held on the occasion of the Mid-Autumn Festival. After arriving at New York, Premier Wen immediately visited overseas Chinese, students abroad, Chinese-funded institutions and staffs of Chinese diplomatic agencies abroad, held talks with the senior executives of Chinese media in the US, sent holiday greetings to the Chinese people at home and abroad and presented to overseas Chinese in the US 1,000 boxes of moon cakes which he especially brought to the US by the chartered flight. Premier Wen said that it is not easy for overseas Chinese to establish themselves, to survive and develop in the local society or to overcome homesickness. He encouraged them to strive unceasingly and work hard to integrate into the local society and seek greater development. He expressed hope that the Chinese media in the US fulfill the major responsibility of reporting China, promoting China-US relations, advancing the great undertaking of national reunification of the motherland, spreading the Chinese culture and educating the youth. Overseas Chinese all extended gratitude to the motherland for its care for them and indicated they will make greater efforts to contribute to realizing the peaceful reunification of the motherland and promoting the friendship between China and the US.
Yang said finally that Premier Wen's participation in the US meetings reached the scheduled goals of expounding China's domestic and foreign policies and propositions, promoting the international development cooperation, supporting the important role of the UN, demonstrating China's responsible image and consolidating China's relations with major powers and developing countries and achieved full success.