China decries historical injustice against the Palestinian People

May 15 marked the 76th anniversary of the Nakba, the catastrophe that saw the destruction of the historic Palestinian homeland and the uprooting and ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population at the hands of Zionist colonisers in 1948.

At the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s regular press conference that day, spokesperson Wang Wenbin said that:

“Seventy-six years on, the historical injustice suffered by the Palestinian people, far from being redressed, has further worsened. Today’s Gaza Strip is left in ruins and rubble. Those wounded and ill cannot receive timely treatment, those hungry cannot obtain necessities, and those escaping from the disaster have nowhere to go.

“People cannot help but ask, for how long will the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza drag on and when will the Palestinian people be able to see an end to their suffering?”

Reporting Wang’s remarks, the Palestine Chronicle further recapped China’s recent expressions of support for the struggle of the Palestinian people, including repeated calls for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza, support for Palestine’s full membership in the United Nations, and affirming, at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the legality of the Palestinian armed struggle against occupation. In this regard, it recalled Chinese official Ma Xinmin’s statement to the ICJ that:

“The struggle waged by peoples for their liberation and right to self-determination, including armed struggle against colonialism, occupation and aggression, should not be considered terror acts.”

The following article was originally published by Palestine Chronicle.

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said during a press conference on Wednesday that the “historical injustice” of the Nakba “has further worsened”.

Wenbin’s remarks were made during his regular press conference on May 15, which marked the 76th anniversary of the Nakba, the Catastrophe, the destruction of the Palestinian homeland – historic Palestine – and the mass ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian population in 1948. 

“Seventy-six years on, the historical injustice suffered by the Palestinian people, far from being redressed, has further worsened,” Wenbin said.

“Today’s Gaza Strip is left in ruins and rubble. Those wounded and ill cannot receive timely treatment, those hungry cannot obtain basic necessities, and those escaping from the disaster have nowhere to go,” the Chinese official added.

“People cannot help but ask, for how long will the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza drag on and when will the Palestinian people be able to see an end to their suffering?”

Wenbin also reiterated that “China firmly opposes the expansion of the fighting to Rafah and opposes collective punishment on the people in Gaza.”

He also said that China continues to “support the establishment of an independent State of Palestine that enjoys full sovereignty based on the 1967 border and with east Jerusalem as its capital.”

Calls for Ceasefire

China has repeatedly called for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza and affirmed its support for full membership of Palestine in the United Nations. 

During a press conference on the sidelines of the second session of the National Council in Beijing last March, the Chinese minister said that “the failure to end this humanitarian disaster today, in the 21st century, is a tragedy for humanity and disgrace for civilization,”

“Nothing justifies the protraction of the conflict or the killing of the civilian population,” he added.

Wang Yi also affirmed his country’s strong support for the “just cause of the Palestinian people to restore their legitimate national rights”.

He stressed that China “will continue to work with the international community to restore peace, save lives, and uphold justice” adding that China supports “Palestine’s bid to become a full member state of the United Nations.”

Right to Armed Struggle

On February 21, China sharply criticized the United States for vetoing a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Beijing said the move effectively gave a “green light to the continued slaughter” of Palestinians.

One day later, addressing the International Court of Justice, the Chinese representative said the Palestinians’ use of armed struggle to gain independence from foreign and colonial rule is “legitimate” and “well-founded” in international law.

“In pursuit of the right to self-determination, Palestinian people’s use of force to resist foreign oppression and complete the establishment of an independent state is (an) inalienable right well founded in international law,” Ma Xinmin told the ICJ in The Hague.

Citing resolutions by the UN General Assembly, Beijing’s envoy to the top world court said that people struggling for self-determination could use “all available means, including armed struggle.”

“The struggle waged by peoples for their liberation, right to self-determination, including armed struggle against colonialism, occupation, aggression, domination against foreign forces should not be considered terror acts,” Ma stated in his address to the ICJ, citing international conventions.

Genocide Continues

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7. 

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 35,233 Palestinians have been killed, and 79,141.

Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip. 

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba. 

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

Minister Liu Jianchao meets with SWAPO delegation

The historic ties between the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the SWAPO (South West African People’s Organisation) Party of Namibia were reaffirmed with a recent visit by a SWAPO delegation led by  Sophia Shaningwa, Secretary General of the party.

Meeting Liu Jianchao on May 14, the Minister of the CPC International Department (IDCPC) said that China and Namibia fought side by side during Namibia’s struggle for national independence and forged a profound friendship. (China consistently supported the armed struggle led by SWAPO against apartheid colonialism and imperialism from the early days, with Sam Nujoma, the father of the Namibian nation, forging a revolutionary friendship with successive generations of Chinese leaders from Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai onwards.)

Liu added that the CPC and SWAPO are both political parties that work tirelessly for the interests of the people. The close ties between the two parties are an important cornerstone for the inheritance and development of relations.

Shaningwa said that Namibia-China friendship was jointly created by leaders from the older generations of the two countries and has grown stronger over time. SWAPO regards the CPC as a close comrade and a true friend. It hopes to learn experience in party building and state governance from the CPC, enhance high-level exchanges between the two parties, strengthen cooperation in cadre training and other fields, and promote the relations between the two parties and the two countries.  

The following article was originally published on the website of the IDCPC.

Beijing, May 14th—Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC), met here today with a delegation led by Sophia Shaningwa, Secretary General of the SWAPO Party of Namibia.  

Liu said, China and Namibia fought side by side during Namibia’s struggle for national independence and forged a profound friendship. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations, the two countries have continuously strengthened political mutual trust and achieved fruitful results in cooperation in various fields. The Chinese side is willing to work with the Namibian side, under the leadership of the two heads of state, to inherit China-Namibia friendship, deepen political mutual trust, strengthen practical cooperation in various fields, and better benefit the two countries and the two peoples.  

Liu said, the CPC and the SWAPO Party are both political parties that work tirelessly for the interests of the people. The close ties between the two Parties are an important cornerstone for the inheritance and development of relations. The CPC is willing to strengthen high-level exchanges with the SWAPO Party, deepen mutual learning of experience in state governance and administration, support each other in safeguarding the sovereignty, security, and development interests of the two countries, promote exchanges and cooperation between youth and women’s organizations affiliated to the two Parties, and push China-Namibia comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership for constant development.  

Shaningwa said, Namibia-China friendship was jointly created by leaders from the older generations of the two countries and has grown stronger over time. The Namibian side thanks the Chinese side for its selfless assistance in agriculture, infrastructure construction and other aspects, and hopes to comprehensively strengthen cooperation with the Chinese side in all areas. The SWAPO Party regards the CPC as a close comrade and a true friend. It hopes to learn experience in party building and state governance from the CPC, enhance high-level exchanges between the two Parties, strengthen cooperation in cadre training and other fields, and promote the relations between the two parties and the two countries for greater development.  

Li Mingxiang, Vice-minister of the IDCPC, was present. 

Video: Black Liberation and People’s China – Rediscovering a History of Transcontinental Solidarity

Friends of Socialist China, in conjunction with the International Manifesto Group, organised a well-attended webinar on Saturday May 11 on the theme of Black Liberation and People’s China – Rediscovering a History of Transcontinental Solidarity.

The webinar marked the 65th anniversary of the historic visit to China by Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois, where, together with his wife Shirley Graham Du Bois, the great scholar and revolutionary celebrated his 91st birthday on February 23rd, 1959.

Focusing specifically on transcontinental solidarity between the Chinese revolution and the African-American freedom struggle, the webinar noted that this revolutionary history neither begins nor ends with Dr. Du Bois. It embraces Langston Hughes and Paul Robeson from the 1930s; Robert F. and Mabel Williams and Malcolm X in the 1960s; the Black Panther Party in the 1960s and 1970s; and many others, joined by Chinese leaders, including Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai, as well as Chinese American communists and progressives and returned overseas Chinese.

The event was moderated by our co-editor Keith Bennett and featured a distinguished panel of speakers as follows:

  • Professor Gerald Horne, John J. and Rebecca Moores Chair of History and African American Studies, University of Houston, USA; 
  • Dr. Charisse Burden-Stelly, Associate Professor of African American Studies, Wayne State University, USA; 
  • Dr. Gao Yunxiang, Professor of History, Toronto Metropolitan University, Canada; 
  • Dr. Zifeng Liu, Post Doctoral Scholar, Africana Research Center, Pennsylvania State University, USA; 
  • Margaret Kimberley, Executive Editor and Senior Columnist, Black Agenda Report; and
  • Qiao Collective, a diaspora Chinese media collective challenging US aggression against China

The video of this interesting and important webinar is embedded below, followed by the individual contributions.

Black Liberation and People’s China: Rediscovering a History of Transcontinental Solidarity
Keith Bennett
Gerald Horne
Gao Yunxiang
Charisse Burden-Stelly
Zifeng Liu
Charles Xu
Margaret Kimberley

Putin: Russia-China relations have reached the highest level ever

Following his decisive victory in the presidential election, held March 15-17, Vladimir Putin was sworn in on May 7 to serve his fifth term as President of the Russian Federation. On May 16-17, he paid a state visit to the People’s Republic of China, his first foreign visit since his inauguration.

On the day prior to his visit, the Xinhua News Agency released an extensive written interview with the Russian leader. In highlighting the various reasons for his choice of destination, Putin wrote:

“I have emphasised on many occasions that our peoples are bound by a long and strong tradition of friendship and cooperation. That is one of the most important pillars of bilateral relations. During World War II, Soviet and Chinese soldiers stood up together against Japanese militarism. We remember and value the contribution of the Chinese people to the common victory. It was China that held back major forces of Japanese militarists, making it possible for the Soviet Union to focus on defeating Nazism in Europe. And, of course, we are grateful to our Chinese friends for their careful attitude to war memorials, to the memory of Soviet citizens who had fought for the liberation of China and supported the revolutionary struggle of the Chinese people, their righteous fight against the invaders. Today, Russia-China relations have reached the highest level ever, and despite the difficult global situation continue to get stronger.

“This year is special for our countries. October 1 marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the People’s Republic of China. The country is approaching this significant historical date with outstanding achievements, which we welcome as old, reliable and time-tested friends. The USSR was the first to recognise the PRC on the second day of its existence. So in early October, we will also celebrate the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.”

Clearly alluding to the bitter dispute that later divided the Soviet Union and China, Putin noted:

“Over the three quarters of a century, our countries have travelled a long and at times difficult way. We have learnt well the lessons of the history of our relationship at different stages of their development… It is important that Russia-China ties as they are today, are free from the influence of either ideology or political trends. Their multidimensional development is an informed strategic choice based on the wide convergence of core national interests, profound mutual trust, strong public support and sincere friendship between the peoples of the two countries… In a broader sense, we are working to contribute to the development and prosperity of Russia and China by enhancing equal, mutually beneficial economic and humanitarian cooperation, and strengthen foreign policy coordination in the interests of building a just multipolar world order.”

Turning to trade and economic cooperation, Xinhua, in its question, noted that last year, the target set by the two heads of state of a US$200 billion trade turnover had been achieved ahead of schedule, to which Putin responded:

“Trade and economic relations between our countries are developing at a fast pace, showing strong immunity to external challenges and crises… More than 90% of settlements between our companies are made in national currencies. So it would be more accurate to say that bilateral trade currently totals about 20 trillion rubles, or nearly 1.6 trillion yuan.”

On the question of cultural ties, having spoken about Russia’s long-standing interest in Chinese culture, Putin added:

“I know that people in China are also keen to get acquainted with Russian literature, art and traditions. Our eminent theatre groups and musicians regularly perform in China, museums organise their exhibitions, and Russian films are run in cinemas. We are most willing to introduce our Chinese friends to the historical, artistic and cultural heritage of multi-ethnic Russia in all its diversity.

“As for my personal attitude to Chinese culture, I would like to emphasise that I am always eager to discover China’s unique and authentic traditions, especially during my visits to the PRC. I know quite a bit about your martial arts, including Wushu, which is very popular in our country. [Putin himself is a renowned practitioner of judo.] I also have respect for Chinese philosophy. My family members are also interested in China, and some of them are learning Chinese.”

Russia holds this year’s rotating chair of the BRICS cooperation mechanism and this is also the first year of “greater BRICS cooperation”. In this regard, President Putin said: “Full-scale work is underway on all three main pillars of cooperation – politics and security, the economy and finance, culture and people-to-people contacts. One of the main goals of the Russian Chairmanship is undoubtedly the seamless integration of the BRICS new members…  I would like to particularly stress that cooperation within BRICS relies on the principles of mutual respect, equality, openness and consensus. That is why countries of the Global South and East, which see BRICS as a platform for their voices to be certainly heard and taken into account, find our association so attractive.”

Reflecting on the successful development and growing attraction of both BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), and how this relates to the bilateral relationship, Putin ridiculed western rhetoric regarding the so-called ‘rules based international order’, noting: “Our countries have similar or coinciding positions on key issues on the international agenda. We advocate for the primacy of international law, equal, indivisible, comprehensive and sustainable security at both the global and regional level with the UN’s central coordinating role. We also reject Western attempts to impose an order based on lies and hypocrisy, on some mythical rules of no one knows whose making.”

He commented at length on the Ukraine crisis, expressing support for China’s peace initiative, stating:

“We commend China’s approaches to resolving the crisis in Ukraine. Beijing is well aware of its root causes and global geopolitical significance, which is reflected in its 12-point plan entitled ‘China’s Position on the Political Settlement of the Ukraine Crisis’ published in February 2023. The ideas and proposals contained in the document show the genuine desire of our Chinese friends to help stabilise the situation…

“Beijing proposes practicable and constructive steps to achieve peace by refraining from pursuing vested interests and constant escalation of tensions, minimising the negative impact of the conflict on the global economy and the stability of global value chains. The steps build on the idea that we need to forego the ‘Cold War mentality’ and ensure indivisible security and respect for international law and the UN Charter in their entirety and interrelation. They could therefore lay the groundwork for a political and diplomatic process that would take into account Russia’s security concerns and contribute to achieving a long-term and sustainable peace.

“Unfortunately, neither Ukraine nor its Western patrons support these initiatives. They are not ready to engage in an equal, honest and open dialogue based on mutual respect and consideration of each other’s interests. They are reluctant to discuss the underlying causes, the very origins of the global crisis, which has manifested itself, inter alia, in the dramatic situation around Ukraine. Why? Because today’s global shocks have been provoked precisely by their policies in the previous years and decades.

“Instead, Western elites are stubbornly working to ‘punish’ Russia, isolate and weaken it, supplying the Kiev authorities with money and arms. They have imposed almost 16,000 unilateral illegitimate sanctions against our country. They are threatening to dismember our country. They are illegally trying to appropriate our foreign assets. They are turning a blind eye to the resurgence of Nazism and to Ukraine-sponsored terrorist attacks in our territory.

“We are seeking a comprehensive, sustainable and just settlement of this conflict through peaceful means. We are open to a dialogue on Ukraine, but such negotiations must take into account the interests of all countries involved in the conflict, including ours. They must also involve a substantive discussion on global stability and security guarantees for Russia’s opponents and, naturally, for Russia itself. Needless to say, these must be reliable guarantees. That is where the main problem is, since we are dealing with states whose ruling circles seek to substitute the world order based on international law with an ‘order based on certain rules,’ which they keep talking about but which no one has ever seen, no one has agreed to, and which, apparently, tend to change depending on the current political situation and interests of those who invent these rules.

“Russia stands ready for negotiations; moreover, we had engaged in such negotiations. On April 15, 2022, in Istanbul, together with the Ukrainian delegation, we drafted a peace agreement, taking into account the demands of the Ukrainian side, including those on future security guarantees for Ukraine. Moreover, the head of the Ukrainian delegation initialled the main provisions of the draft document. Our Western partners tried to convince us that in order to finalise and sign the agreement, it was necessary to provide conditions. The main point was that Russian troops be withdrawn away from Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. And so we did. But instead of signing the peace agreement, the Ukrainian side suddenly announced the cessation of negotiations. Later on, Ukrainian officials stated that they had done so, inter alia, because their Western allies had recommended that they continue hostilities and apply joint efforts to achieve Russia’s strategic defeat. We have never refused to negotiate.”

We reproduce below the full text of President Putin’s interview. It was originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

Continue reading Putin: Russia-China relations have reached the highest level ever

China continues to strengthen its relations with socialist Cuba in practical ways

China is continuing to strengthen its relations with socialist Cuba in practical ways. 

On April 8, Radio Havana reported that: “The advance of a rice donation and the completion, with Chinese help, of the deepest oil well ever drilled in Cuba, illustrated in recent weeks the scope and relevance of cooperation between the two countries.”

The Cuban oil industry, it added, had reported the completion of the 8,477-meter well with the assistance of the Chinese company Gran Muralla.

The Chinese donation of rice, to help alleviate current food shortages on the island, was complemented by steps to increase cooperation in the fields of agri-food, biotechnology, transportation, and communications industries.

Meanwhile, Air China is to resume direct flights to Cuba from May 17. The flights were suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Following Air China’s move, on May 4, the Cuban government announced that Chinese citizens would no longer require a visa to visit Cuba. The Chinese travel platform Ctrip reported that online searches for travel to Cuba surged by 40 percent within half an hour of the announcement.

It has also been announced that China will be the guest country of honour at the 2025 Cuban Tourism Festival.

Song Wei, a professor with the School of International Relations and Diplomacy at Beijing Foreign Studies University, told the Global Times that the resumption of direct flights will facilitate stronger connections between Cuba and the rest of the world, enhance its trade relations, and contribute to consolidating its development basis. It also helps mitigate the impact of the decades-long US embargo and enhances Cuba’s external economic ties in opposition to hegemony and unilateral sanctions.

She added that how to free themselves from the economic hegemony of the US and to seek more development partnerships are particularly important questions for Latin American countries, which is also the reason why Latin America attaches great importance to developing relations with China.

The following articles were first published by Radio Havana and Global Times.

China’s helping hand

The advance of a rice donation and the completion, with Chinese help, of the deepest oil well ever drilled in Cuba, illustrated in recent weeks the scope and relevance of cooperation between the two countries.

The Cuban oil industry reported with satisfaction the completion of the 8,477-meter well with the assistance of the Chinese company Gran Muralla.

More recent was the visit to Havana of Luo Zhaohui, president of China’s International Cooperation Agency for Development, when a donation of rice was made and memorandums of understanding were signed in the agri-food, biotechnology, transportation and communications industries.

The stay of the illustrious visitor was described by the host government as significant and a reflection of the consensus reached by the presidents of both countries, Xi Jinping and Miguel Díaz-Canel, who have met several times.

The most recent agreements and other previous ones are part of the course of relations that stand out for their special nuance.

China understands and cooperates with Cuba in pressing circumstances for the latter, due to the tightening of the U.S. blockade and the inclusion of the Caribbean country in a list that Washington unilaterally points out as sponsors of terrorism.

Now, if Beijing’s gestures and actions towards Havana are relevant and comprehensive, so are the prospects for exchanges.

Continue reading China continues to strengthen its relations with socialist Cuba in practical ways

China and the struggle for peace: a dialogue between Andrew Murray and Ken Hammond

DateThursday 30 May
Time6pm Britain / 1pm US Eastern / 10am US Pacific
VenueZoom, YouTube and Facebook
OrganisersFriends of Socialist China
Morning Star

There is an escalating paranoia in the West about China’s rise: China is accused of stealing Western technology; spying on British parliamentarians; sending surveillance balloons to the US; preparing for war over Taiwan; undermining Western sanctions against Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, Zimbabwe, Iran and Syria; and generally subverting the “rules-based international order”. Politicians and media pundits are calling for a tougher stance on China, accusing it of manufacturing overcapacity, debt trap diplomacy and human rights abuses. In response to these purported violations, the G7 countries have imposed sanctions and heavy tariffs on Chinese products, including solar energy materials and electric vehicles.

China meanwhile has not been at war in over four decades, maintains a constitutional commitment to peaceful development, and claims to be “building a global community of shared future, with the goal of creating an open, inclusive, clean and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security, and common prosperity”.

This dialogue between Ken Hammond and Andrew Murray – following on from their November 2022 dialogue on the evolving significance of the Chinese Revolution – will explore the history and contemporary reality of China’s foreign policy, the “China threat”, multipolarity, the New Cold War, nuclear weapons, the principles of peaceful coexistence, and more.

Andrew Murray is vice-president and founding chair of Stop the War Coalition, a longstanding trade unionist, peace campaigner, and one of the leading thinkers of the British left. He has written a number of books, including most recently ‘Is Socialism Possible in Britain?’, reflecting on his time serving as a political advisor to Jeremy Corbyn. Andrew has maintained an active interest in China for several decades, and has been vocal in his opposition to the New Cold War.

Ken Hammond is a professor of East Asian and Global History at New Mexico State University. He was a student organiser at Kent State University at the time of the shocking incident of 4 May 1970, when the Ohio Army National Guard shot and killed four students peacefully protesting the invasion of Cambodia when Nixon escalated the Vietnam War, and was indicted as one of the ‘Kent 25’. Ken lived and worked in Beijing between 1982 and 1987 managing activities for American educational delegations.

Ken earned his PhD in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard University in 1994, and has worked in support of friendly US-China relations for many decades. He is a founder of the US-based movement Pivot to Peace, set up in 2020 in response to the escalating anti-China rhetoric emanating from US politicians and media. He is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Chinese History, published by Cambridge University Press, and the author of several books, including From Yao to Mao: 5,000 Years of Chinese History. Over the years he has taught at universities in Beijing, Shanghai and Shijiazhuang.

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Arnold August: slanders about Tibet/Xizang are designed to discredit Chinese socialism

The following interview with Montreal-based author, journalist and lecturer Arnold August describes Arnold’s 2023 visit to Southwest China’s Xizang Autonomous Region (Tibet) and Qinghai.

Arnold discusses his visit to a boarding school in the Hainan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai, where he toured the school, met with teachers and pupils, and asked a wide range of questions. Referencing the assorted lurid claims about how China is using boarding schools in order to “sinicise” Tibet, Arnold notes that the reality is quite different; indeed major efforts are made to preserve and promote Tibetan culture and language.

But why would Western forces want to spread slanders about boarding schools?

In brief, it is to discredit Chinese socialism. People in the West are increasingly looking for an alternative to capitalism. China does not present itself as a model. But China’s earth-shattering modernization and its cultural progress – in the broad sense of a civilized, peaceful, collective society, as opposed to the American individualistic jungle – is increasingly attractive. Hence the inevitable spoiler: “What about the boarding schools in Tibet?”

Arnold further notes that absolute poverty was eliminated in Xizang in 2019, observing: “While this is an amazing achievement in the rest of China, given the harsh social-economic Tibetan conditions, it is nothing short of a miracle.” He describes the situation prevailing before the emancipation of serfs in Tibet in 1959, when 95 percent of the population were slaves and serfs, had no land of their own and were considered the property of the serf owners.

The interview was first published in Global Times.

Over the past decades, Southwest China’s Xizang Autonomous Region has experienced a period of unprecedented development. This year marks the 65th anniversary of Serfs’ Emancipation Day, a day to commemorate the emancipation of more than one million serfs in Xizang in 1959. Xizang, once plagued by poverty and backwardness, is now embarking on a new journey of modernization. This huge change astonished Canadian author and journalist Arnold August (August), who visited Xizang and neighboring Qinghai Province last year.

He shared with Global Times (GT) reporter Xia Wenxin his experiences during his field trip to this region as well as his thoughts on its development.


GT: You visited Xizang and Qinghai in the second half of last year. Can you share with us what you saw in these regions? What aspect of their development impressed you the most?

August:
 Our visit to a boarding school in Gonghe county in the largely Tibetan-speaking Hainan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Qinghai Province

 provided us with an eyewitness account to counter the allegations to which you refer. There are so many positive and enlightening features of this school that people in Western countries should know about.

Based on transparent and open-ended questions and answers during the tour of the classrooms (education is free), the dormitories (modern and well-equipped), the sports fields, the cafeteria (great health manual), the state-of-the-art multimedia rooms and classrooms, the exercise facilities for both the teachers and students, and much more, the veil of “mystery” surrounding boarding schools was completely torn apart.

 I asked our hosts about the dormitories. The very term “boarding school” in North America rightly conjures up images of colonial genocide against indigenous peoples. But the answer was: “Normally, students sleep in the dormitories during the week. It’s convenient for their studies, in terms of time, and if they have any questions, they can just go and ask their teachers. Most students go home for the weekend. However, if they want to stay in school on the weekends, it’s okay – they can stay if they want to.”In response to the sub-question about why Western forces want to create these lies about boarding schools, in brief, it is to discredit Chinese socialism. People in the West are increasingly looking for an alternative to capitalism. China does not present itself as a model. But China’s earth-shattering modernization and its cultural progress – in the broad sense of a civilized, peaceful, collective society, as opposed to the American individualistic jungle – is increasingly attractive. Hence the inevitable spoiler: “What about the boarding schools in Tibet?”

 We counter what we call “whataboutism” by turning the tables on the skeptics, by asking “what about” the universally recognized facts of the Canadian and American states’ responsibility in the actual genocide of the first peoples in the boarding schools? And side by side, we present the facts about China, based on firsthand evidence by visitors and analysts.

GT: There is a view that Xizang is a microcosm of China’s achievements in construction and development and an all-encompassing window into Chinese modernization. Do you agree with this? How does the development of Xizang reflect the characteristics of Chinese modernization?

August:
 Yes, this view is supported by our visits to several such sites as examples of Chinese achievements. But let’s focus on one, the National Innovation Base, which is a long bus ride from Lhasa. It was built by the local government in 2017. Its basic purpose is to give post-university young people the opportunity to build their own businesses or, in the words of the hosts there, to build their own dreams. They are provided with free office space for a period of three years. Water, electricity and housing fees are covered by the government. They told us that “the young people just need to bring their computers and start working here. Everyone has access to the site’s online platform to sell their products.”

This center is not only an example of China’s achievements in construction and development and a comprehensive window on Chinese modernization, but it is also an example of socialism with Chinese characteristics. In short, this innovative path seeks to avoid the extremes of full public ownership of the means of production and a planned economy. How does it do this? It does this by redefining the relationship between state ownership and individual effort with the goal, as our hosts told us, of “realizing dreams.” Thus, while all the conditions for individual success are created, the individual is also socialized. It is thus an example of the balance between state and market, a sine qua non for further Chinese modernization.

Continue reading Arnold August: slanders about Tibet/Xizang are designed to discredit Chinese socialism

China and Cuba working to strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation and promote socialist development

Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China (IDCPC), met with Ludmila Alamo, Deputy Chief of the Ideological Department of the Communist Party of Cuba, on April 23, during her visit to China.

Alamo said the Cuban side sincerely thanks China for its strong support and selfless help to overcome economic and social challenges and promote the cause of socialism in Cuba over the years. The Communist Party of Cuba cherishes its friendly relations with the CPC and is willing to increase high-level exchanges between the two Parties, strengthen exchanges and cooperation in ideological and other fields, and create a favourable environment of public opinion for promoting the socialist causes of both countries.

The following report was originally published on the IDCPC website.

Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, met here today with Ludmila Alamo, Deputy Chief of the Ideological Department of the Communist Party of Cuba.

Liu said, in recent years, General Secretary Xi Jinping and First Secretary Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez have maintained close communication, injecting strong impetus into the development of China-Cuba relations in the new era. The Chinese side is ready to work with the Cuban side to implement the important consensus reached by the top leaders of the two Parties and countries, strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields and promote the development of respective socialist causes. The CPC is willing to deepen institutionalized exchanges and cooperation with the Communist Party of Cuba, strengthen mutual learning on party building and state governance, and contribute to jointly building a China-Cuba community with a shared future in the new era.  

Alamo said, the Cuban side sincerely thanks China for its strong support and selfless help to overcome economic and social challenges and promote the cause of socialism in Cuba over the years. The Cuban side firmly upholds the one-China principle, supports China’s great cause of national reunification and opposes external interference in China’s internal affairs. The Communist Party of Cuba cherishes its friendly relations with the CPC and is willing to increase high-level exchanges between the two Parties, strengthen exchanges and cooperation in ideological and other fields, and create a favorable environment of public opinion for promoting the socialist causes of both countries. 

Li Mingxiang meets with delegation of the South African Communist Party

A delegation of the South African Communist Party (SACP), led by Solly Afrika Mapaila, Secretary-General of the party, recently visited China. Li Mingxiang, Vice Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China (IDCPC), meeting the delegation, spoke highly of the special “comradely and brotherly” relations between China and South Africa and between the CPC and the SACP. Mapaila said the SACP admires the great achievements of socialism with Chinese characteristics and is willing to learn from the CPC’s successful concepts and experiences so as to promote socialism in South Africa.

The following brief report was originally published on the IDCPC website.

Li Mingxiang, Vice-minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, met here today with a delegation of the South African Communist Party (SACP) led by Solly Afrika Mapaila, Secretary-General of the SACP.  

Li spoke highly of the special “comradely and brotherly” relations between China and South Africa and the relations between the CPC and the SACP. He said, the CPC is willing to strengthen strategic communication and cooperation with the SACP and exchange of experience in state governance and administration, push forward the sustained and in-depth development of the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and South Africa in the “golden era” and join hands to build a high-level China-Africa community with a shared future.   

Mapaila said, the SACP admires the great achievements of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and is willing to learn from the CPC’s successful concepts and experiences in an in-depth way, promote the practice of socialism in South Africa, work together to increase the representation of developing countries in international affairs and make the international order more just and equitable. 

Vietnam holds grand ceremony to celebrate 70th anniversary of Dien Bien Phu victory

Vietnam held a grand ceremony and parade on May 7 to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the great victory in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu. This victory of a colonised nation against a far stronger imperialist power not only sounded the death knell of French colonial rule in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, but also inspired the national liberation movement throughout the world.

Held in Dien Bien Phu city, the celebration was attended by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and other serving and retired Vietnamese leaders. Zhang Qingwei, Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC), joined leaders from Laos, Cambodia and France at the event.

In his speech, Prime Minister Chinh, on behalf of the Party and State, expressed endless gratitude to President Ho Chi Minh, General Vo Nguyen Giap, the direct commander of the Dien Bien Phu campaign, predecessors, soldiers, heroic Vietnamese mothers, the heroes of the people’s armed forces, pioneering youths, frontline workers, war invalids, martyrs’ families, along with the entire armed forces and people nationwide, for their utmost dedication, bravery, and sacrifice to create the historic Dien Bien Phu victory that “resounded across the five continents and shook the globe.”

He also appreciated the precious and wholehearted assistance from China, the countries of the former Soviet Union, socialist nations, international friends, and progressive and peace-loving forces worldwide, especially Laos and Cambodia in the combatant alliance of the three Indochinese countries, for the Dien Bien Phu campaign as well as the Vietnamese people’s struggle for national liberation.

The historic victory was not only significant to the Vietnamese revolution but also became a source of support for national liberation movements and marked the start of the collapse of old colonialism around the world, he remarked.

The following article was originally published in the Vietnamese newspaper Nhân Dân.

The Party Central Committee, the National Assembly (NA), the State President, the Government, the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee, and the northwestern province of Dien Bien held a grand ceremony on May 7 in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Dien Bien Phu Victory (May 7, 1954 – 2024).

The event, organised in Dien Bien Phu city, was attended by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh, Permanent member of the Party Central Committee’s Secretariat and Chairwoman of its Organisation Commission Truong Thi Mai, Acting State President Vo Thi Anh Xuan, Permanent Vice Chairman of the NA Tran Thanh Man, and President of the VFF Central Committee Do Van Chien.

It also saw the presence of former Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh; former State Presidents Nguyen Minh Triet, Truong Tan Sang, and Nguyen Xuan Phuc; former PM Nguyen Tan Dung; and former NA Chairman Nguyen Van An,

International guests included Lao Deputy PM and Minister of National Defence Chansamone Chanyalath, Cambodian Deputy PM Neth Savoeun, Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China Zhang Qingwei, French Minister of the Armed Forces Sebastien Lecornu, delegates of foreign representative bodies in Vietnam, defence attachés of other countries, and representatives of overseas Vietnamese.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong sent flowers to the event.

Continue reading Vietnam holds grand ceremony to celebrate 70th anniversary of Dien Bien Phu victory

China and Hungary elevate ties to all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership

Following his state visits to France and Serbia, Chinese President Xi Jinping concluded his European tour in Hungary, arriving in the central European country in the evening of May 8 and returning to Beijing on May 10. He previously visited Hungary 15 years ago.

Coinciding with his arrival, President Xi published an article in the Hungarian newspaper Magyar Nemzet. He wrote:

“This year marks the 75th anniversary of China-Hungary diplomatic relations. The bilateral relationship has since been developing and growing steadily and soundly with tangible results achieved in all fields. We respect and treat each other as equals, and pursue mutually beneficial cooperation. We see each other as a priority partner of cooperation. We have gone through hardships together and defied power politics together amid volatile international situations. We have found our respective path for sovereign states to independently conduct friendly exchanges with other countries… We have kept our original aspiration for friendship in mind since the establishment of diplomatic ties… We have shown understanding and provided support to each other on issues that bear on our respective core interests and are of major concern to us.”

Regarding current cooperation, he observed that, “focusing  on high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, our two countries are strengthening synergy in development strategies and deepening results-oriented cooperation in such areas as investment, infrastructure, finance, new energy, and telecommunication technology.

“We will work with Hungary to forge greater synergy between the Belt and Road Initiative and Hungary’s Eastern Opening strategy, and accelerate the construction of the Budapest-Belgrade railway link and other significant cooperation projects… We will strengthen cooperation with Hungary in clean energy, artificial intelligence, digital economy, green development, and other emerging areas, foster new quality productive forces, and serve our respective high-quality development.

“China is willing to expand with Hungary exchanges and cooperation in education, culture, tourism, sport, youth, the media and at the subnational level, support the teaching of each other’s languages, make full use of cultural centres, and encourage more communication and interaction between peoples and between institutions.”

Regarding the European context, Xi noted that, “Recently, there are signs of stability for the better in China-Europe relations. As comprehensive strategic partners, China and Europe have a broad range of shared interests. Their relationship is more cooperative than competitive and features more consensus than differences… We are ready to work with Hungary to deepen and substantiate China’s cooperation with Central and Eastern European countries and to ensure steady and sustained growth of China-Europe relations.”

In his arrival statement at Budapest Airport, Xi said that, “China and Hungary are good friends and good partners of mutual trust. In 1949, Hungary was one of the first countries to recognise and establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China. In 2004, we decided to forge a friendly and cooperative partnership. In 2017, the bilateral relationship was elevated to a comprehensive strategic partnership, upgrading and speeding up the mutually beneficial cooperation and strengthening the popular support for traditional China-Hungary friendship.”

Meeting with Hungarian President Tamás Sulyok on May 9, Xi insisted that China-Hungary friendship from generation to generation does not target any third party, nor should it be dictated by any third party.

It is hoped that Hungary will take the opportunity of taking on the rotating presidency of the European Union (EU) in the second half of this year to promote the steady and sound development of China-EU relations.

For his part, President Sulyok thanked Xi for proposing the Belt and Road Initiative, saying that Hungary has benefited a lot from infrastructure connectivity and other cooperation.

The Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilisation Initiative proposed by Xi, which call for strengthening international dialogue and cooperation, are crucial for tackling various challenges facing the world and preventing bloc confrontation, he said, adding that the Hungarian side highly appreciates those initiatives.

Noting that China has advanced technology and experience in green transformation and clean energy, he said more Chinese enterprises are welcome to invest and conduct cooperation in Hungary.

Meeting with Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, China and Hungary decided to elevate bilateral relations to an all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership for the new era.

The two sides should continue to be good friends of mutual trust and assistance, and good partners of win-win cooperation, Xi said, calling on the two countries to take the establishment of the all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership for the new era as an opportunity to inject new and strong impetus into bilateral cooperation and create a better future for the two peoples.

Following their talks, the two sides issued a joint statement. It noted that they, “always respect and treat each other equally, and set a good example of mutually beneficial pragmatic cooperation.”

Hungary respects the great achievements that China has scored in economic and social development, and hopes that the Chinese people, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, will build China into a great modern socialist country in all respects, achieve the Second Centenary Goal and advance the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through Chinese modernisation. China commends Hungary’s peaceful, open and pragmatic foreign policy and its positive role in promoting regional stability and common prosperity of Europe.

The Hungarian government remains firm in adhering to the one-China principle, and reaffirms that there is but one China in the world, that the Government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing China. Hungary opposes all forms of separatist activities aimed at breaking the unity of China. 

The Hungarian side appreciates the positive role that Chinese enterprises have played in the national development of Hungary, welcomes more Chinese enterprises to invest and do business in Hungary, and is willing to foster a favourable investment and business environment for them. The two sides acknowledge that Hungary has favoirable endowments to provide a meeting point for Eastern and Western economies and technologies. The Hungary-Serbia Railway is a landmark project under Belt and Road cooperation, and also a flagship project of cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European Countries. The two sides are willing to actively promote the construction of the Hungarian section of the Hungary-Serbia Railway, and jointly promote high-level connectivity in Central and Eastern Europe.

The two sides spoke highly of the development of the China-Europe Railway Express between China and Hungary, and agreed to establish an inter-governmental cooperation mechanism on the China-Europe Railway Express, promote infrastructure connectivity, and jointly take practical measures to ensure the security of the transport routes and improve the quality and efficiency of the China-Europe Railway Express, so as to provide important support for deepening economic and trade cooperation between the two countries.

Following this, the two leaders met the press and Xi Jinping noted that: “China values its comprehensive strategic partnership with the European Union (EU), and views Europe as an important pole in a multipolar world and a key partner in China’s bid to advance Chinese modernisation. China supports Hungary in playing a bigger role in the EU and promoting greater progress in China-EU relations.”

On May 10, Prime Minister Orbán and his wife hosted a farewell event for President Xi and his wife Peng Liyuan. Overlooking the city of Budapest, with a view of both sides of the River Danube, Orbán briefed Xi on the history, development, transformation and future plans of the city, noting that Chinese enterprises have made significant contributions to Hungary’s economic development and urban construction, and many Chinese-built projects have become flagship projects of bilateral cooperation and symbols of friendship.

China leads the world in many technological sectors, and Hungary looks forward to more cooperation with China and importing more advanced technologies from China to benefit Hungary’s national development and people’s livelihood.

Xi briefed Orbán on the century-old history of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the important philosophies of party management and state governance, pointing out that the CPC has grown from a small party with only a few dozen members to a large one with more than 98 million members, and has withstood many severe tests, leading China to achieve today’s achievements.

The CPC is confident in continuing to overcome various risks and challenges on the road ahead and maintain China’s long-term stability and development, Xi said, noting this will not only enable the Chinese people to have better lives but also make a greater contribution to world peace and development.

Analysing the significance of the visit, the Global Times newspaper wrote that: “Both Chinese and Hungarian experts believe mutual respect and a cooperative approach with no ideological strings attached have played decisive roles in bilateral relations.

“On world affairs, China and Hungary often share similar stances. Despite being an EU member state and a NATO member, Hungary has remained committed to not sending any weapons to Ukraine. 

“In recent years, Hungary has become a major logistics hub for China-Europe trade. Hungary is also Europe’s electric vehicle hub ─ Chinese EV maker BYD announced in late 2023 that it will build its first European electric vehicle production base in Hungary and the plant will produce EVs and plug-in hybrids for the Europe market. 

“On several occasions, Hungary has stood aside from or opposed EU positions against China. For instance, in 2021, Hungary blocked an EU statement criticising China’s National Security Law for Hong Kong.”

Sun Keqin, a research fellow at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations (CICIR), noted that: “”Hungary is special among the EU. It does not oppose the bloc every time when it comes to China-related issues, but it has played a special role in China-Europe relations. Hungary is a partner China should seriously cooperate with.”

On July 1, Hungary will take over the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU. Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto believes Hungary can use the opportunity to influence the EU’s policy toward China.

“We will be able to share with our European colleagues in a very credible manner how helpful, how useful and how profitable it can be to work together with China,” Szijjarto told the Global Times in an interview.

Prior to Xi’s visit, Foreign Minister Szijjarto visited China. Meeting his counterpart on April 24, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that China appreciates Hungary’s determination to deepen cooperation with China despite interference and pressure, adding that the fruitful and mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Hungary in various fields not only benefits the two peoples, but also strongly proves that China is an opportunity rather than a challenge, a partner rather than an opponent to Europe.

Noting that Hungary will take over the rotating presidency of the European Union (EU) in the second half of this year, Wang said it is hoped that Hungary will promote the EU’s rational and friendly view of China’s development, pursue a more active and pragmatic policy towards China, strengthen strategic communication between China and Europe, and promote the sustained, stable and healthy development of China-EU relations.

Hungary is opposed to “decoupling and breaking the chain,” and always believes that viewing China as a threat will only mean missing opportunities, and treating China as a partner is the right choice, Szijjarto said.

Hungary is willing to promote the construction of key projects under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, continuously deepen the mutually beneficial cooperation between Hungary and China in various fields, push bilateral relations to a new level and promote the steady and sound development of EU-China relations, he added.

The following articles were originally published on the website of the Chinese Foreign Ministry and by the Xinhua News Agency and Global Times.

Full text of Xi’s signed article in Hungarian media

BUDAPEST, May 8 (Xinhua) — A signed article by Chinese President Xi Jinping titled “Embarking on a Golden Voyage in China-Hungary Relations” was published Wednesday in the Hungarian newspaper Magyar Nemzet.

Continue reading China and Hungary elevate ties to all-weather comprehensive strategic partnership

China urges admitting Palestine as full UN member state

Speaking at the United Nations on May 10, Chinese Ambassador Fu Cong expressed support for the UN Security Council (UNSC) to reconsider Palestine’s application to join the world body.

His comments followed a vote in the UN General Assembly, calling on the world body to admit Palestine as a full member state. Of the 193 members of the UN, 143 voted in favour, just nine countries, including the United States, voted against, while 25 countries abstained. Those who did not participate in the vote included a number whose right to vote has been withdrawn, as US sanctions and theft prevent them from paying their membership dues. These include Venezuela and Afghanistan. Thus, Venezuela, one of the strongest supporters of the Palestinian people, was able to sponsor the resolution but not vote for it.

In his remarks, Ambassador Fu highlighted that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has been cyclical for decades, causing generations of Palestinians to “lose their home and live in displacement under occupation.” He described the situation as a “wound of the world that is constantly ripped open and bleeding.”

The General Assembly vote followed the United States veto of a similar resolution in the Security Council on April 18. Fu described the US action as “merciless”, adding that it was, “not commensurate with the role of a responsible major country.”

As the General Assembly resolution is not binding in terms of Palestine’s full admission to the UN, due to the US’ Security Council veto, it also includes provisions for Palestine’s participation in UN activities, granting additional rights and privileges. Fu explained that these are “special modalities decided on for a lack of other options as a remedy for the historical injustice long endured by Palestine” and as a correction to the US abuse of its veto power. He further emphasised that these are exceptional and not a precedent, expressing confidence that one day Palestine “will become a full UN member and enjoy full and equal rights in the UN like other member states.”

Details of these provisions, and much more useful information and analysis, can be found in this video from Ben Norton of Geopolitical Economy Report. 

The following article was originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

China supports UNSC’s early reconsideration of Palestine’s application to join UN

UNITED NATIONS, May 10 (Xinhua) — China on Friday expressed support for the UN Security Council (UNSC) to reconsider Palestine’s application to join the world body.

China’s permanent representative to the UN Fu Cong emphasized the need for Palestine to be granted full UN membership in his address at the Tenth Emergency Special Session of the UN General Assembly.

Fu highlighted that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has been cyclical for decades, causing generations of Palestinians to “lose their home and live in displacement under occupation.”

He described the situation as a “wound of the world that is constantly ripped open and bleeding.”

Fu stressed that “independent statehood has been a long-cherished aspiration of the Palestinian people” and full UN membership is a crucial step in this historic process.

He insisted that “Palestine should have the same status as Israel,” and it is the international community’s “common responsibility to support and advance the process of Palestine’s independent statehood” to ensure the “implementation of the two-state solution and lasting peace in the Middle East.”

Reflecting on recent developments, Fu expressed regret that “Palestine’s application for full UN membership was mercilessly vetoed by the United States in the Security Council on April 18.”

He criticized the United States for using its veto power to obstruct efforts to correct historical injustice against Palestine, stating that this is “not commensurate with the role of a responsible major country.”

The General Assembly’s emergency special session adopted a resolution by an overwhelming majority, reaffirming the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination, recognizing Palestine’s qualification for full UN membership, and recommending that the Security Council reconsider its application.

“China welcomes this historic resolution, which reflects the will of the international community,” Fu said, noting that China co-sponsored the resolution and hoped that “the relevant country will not create further delays or hurdles.”

The resolution also includes provisions for Palestine’s participation in UN activities, granting additional rights and privileges. Fu explained that these are “special modalities decided on for a lack of other options as a remedy for the historical injustice long endured by Palestine” and as a correction to the U.S. abuse of its veto power.

He said that these modalities, adopted within the limits permitted by the UN Charter, will “enable the international community to listen more adequately to the voice of Palestine” and assist in facilitating dialogue and negotiations with Israel on a relatively equal footing.

Fu emphasized that these arrangements are exceptional and not a precedent, expressing confidence that one day Palestine “will become a full UN member and enjoy full and equal rights in the UN like other member states.”

Fu concluded by addressing the ongoing conflict, identifying the lack of implementation of the two-state solution as the core issue.

He urged Israel to “stop the collective punishment of the Gaza population,” halt its military actions in Rafah, and remove all restrictions on humanitarian goods entering Gaza.

In the West Bank, Fu called for an end to settlement activities and a reduction in settler violence.

He reaffirmed China’s commitment to playing a constructive role in achieving an immediate ceasefire, revitalizing the two-state solution, and promoting peaceful coexistence and lasting stability in the Middle East.

Daniel Ortega: China is contributing to development in Africa, Asia and Latin America

In a recent speech commemorating the anniversary of the death of Nicaraguan freedom fighter and politician Tomás Borge, President Daniel Ortega surveyed the current geopolitical landscape, in particular expressing Nicaragua’s solidarity with the Palestinian people and applauding the student protests in the US and elsewhere: “The Peoples cannot accept, they cannot understand that a genocide is being committed with the participation of the powers of the Empires, headed by the North American Rulers, the Germans, the English, the French.”

Ortega describes the escalating campaign of encirclement and containment against China, asking “what threat is the People’s Republic of China?”

He contrasts China’s foreign policy with that of the Western powers: China “is not installing military bases like so very many military bases the United States has and has installed here in Latin America and the Caribbean alone”; China “is not promoting any war.”

The problem the US and its allies have with China is that “the People’s Republic of China has been growing, developing and has become close with the world’s developing countries… it is contributing to the development of these Peoples, contributing to the fight against poverty among these Peoples, to generating employment”. These are the same countries of the Global South which “the colonialist, imperialist countries used as nothing more than a source of wealth that they could steal.”

The threat to them, the greatest threat to them, to the Europeans, to the United States, is the way in which China has been growing, the threat is that the Chinese economy will grow, when on the other hand history tells us that the economies of the colonialist and imperialist Countries have only grown, using their economies, making them serve so as to dispossess other Peoples, to occupy other Peoples, to exploit other Peoples.

The speech was first published in English on the Tortilla Con Sal website.

Good evening, Nicaraguan Brothers and Sisters, Families of these Blessed Lands. Good evening, Beloved Internationalist Brothers and Sisters. And we are the expression that a New World is possible.

Here we meet as Brothers and Sisters, Compañeros and Compañeras born in the United States of America, born in Switzerland, like that Compañero who died murdered by the bullets of the Empire; Compañeros and Compañeras born in different Countries, Developed and Developing, and we meet, we join each other, in this year of the 45th Anniversary of the Revolution we meet, affirming, assuring, that the day will come when we will all become truly Brothers, Sisters.

That day will come, here is an example, and this has multiplied at different times in history, where Peoples have fought together and continue to fight for Peace; in a World that today more than ever insists on Peace, demands Peace.

And we see youth in North America raising the protest, the condemnation of the genocide that is being committed against the Palestinian People. North American youth protesting, right now, yes, they are protesting, and the protest is multiplying not only in North America, but in every country of our planet.

The Peoples cannot accept, they cannot understand that a genocide is being committed with the participation of the powers of the Empires, headed by the North American Rulers, the Germans, the English, the French.

That is, precisely that World where the Rulers pride themselves on being the most just, the most democratic, the most respectful of Rights, of International Law, they are unmasking themselves. Because they have managed to deceive our Peoples for a long time, thinking that Europe, North America, are Democracies, forgetting or getting us to forget how in a Developed Country, in a democratic Country, Germany, with the support of the great North American capital, Nazism came to Government.

And the war, that great war, that terrible war that caused millions of deaths, originated in a European country, it did not originate in an African country, nor did it originate in a Latin American or Caribbean or Asian country, it originated in Germany… Germany! And then the United States showing off that they own the atomic weapon, because in that war they started looking for how to build atomic weapons, Hitler wanted atomic weapons and the United States also wanted atomic weapons.

The United States had the atomic weapon and it did not take them long to launch it, to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, two cities where there was no Army, two Cities where the victims were the civilian citizens of Japan, and where that horrendous crime caused more than 200,000 deaths as well as the incurable damage, as a result of radiation, in children, who as they were growing up were manifesting multiple diseases as adults and the elderly, finishing them off.

That is to say, they managed to cover up all those crimes over time. There was no condemnation of the use of atomic weapons. And today, well, there are atomic weapons everywhere, and that’s why the world has become more tense, pushing humanity to its limits.

There is a lot of talk about not crossing the red line, because now it is no longer a question of one Country against another, but one where all of humanity is exposed to crimes such as those now being committed against the Palestinian People, and the rulers of Israel insist on that, while as a People, the People of Israel is a People that we respect.

Continue reading Daniel Ortega: China is contributing to development in Africa, Asia and Latin America

Xi Jinping holds talks with President Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia

Chinese President Xi Jinping paid a state visit to Serbia from May 7-8, 2024, as the second leg of his European tour, which also took him first to France and subsequently to Hungary. His last visit to Serbia was in 2016.

Reporting his arrival on the evening of May 7, Xinhua News Agency reported that the “Serbian Air Force sent two fighter jets to escort Xi’s plane after it entered the country’s airspace. The Chinese president was warmly welcomed by Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić and his wife, Tamara Vučić at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport. Serbian children presented flowers to Xi and his wife, Peng Liyuan, and waved the national flags of China and Serbia. Serbian people dressed in national costumes sang and danced to welcome them.”

In an arrival statement, President Xi said that China and Serbia enjoy profound traditional friendship.

“Our bilateral relationship has stood the test of the changing international environment and become a fine example of state-to-state relations. Since the establishment of the comprehensive strategic partnership in 2016, the bilateral relationship has realised leapfrog development, and achieved historic results. The two countries are bound by rock-solid political mutual trust and have seen fruitful results in high quality Belt and Road cooperation. 

“Our ironclad friendship has taken deeper roots in the heart of the two peoples. China and Serbia have rendered each other firm support on issues concerning our respective core interests and major concerns. We have jointly upheld international fairness and justice and contributed our share to promoting world peace and development. Cooperation between the two countries is rooted in the principle of equality and mutual benefits.”

The two heads of state held talks on the morning of May 8, in which they announced the decision to deepen and elevate China-Serbia comprehensive strategic partnership and build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era. Prior to this, President Vučić held a grand welcoming ceremony for President Xi, during which some 15,000 Serbian people waved national flags of China and Serbia to express the warmest welcome to the Chinese head of state.

In the talks, President Xi said that the China-Serbia ironclad friendship is characterised by profound historical roots, solid political foundation, extensive common interests and strong popular support.  Actions speak louder than words. China will stand shoulder to shoulder with Serbia, share weal and woe like passengers in the same boat, carry forward the spirit of the ironclad friendship, maintain and grow their friendship, and jointly safeguard fundamental and long-term interests of the two countries.

President Xi stressed that Serbia is China’s first comprehensive strategic partner in Central and Eastern Europe. Under the new circumstances, Serbia has become the first European country to build with China a community with a shared future.  The China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era is an upgrade of the ironclad friendship between China and Serbia. It also represents their common values and objectives, namely, joint pursuit of development, win-win corporation and mutual success. These are the common aspirations of China, Serbia, and all countries that are committed to independence, peace, and development. 

China supports Serbia in upholding independence and pursuing a development path suited to its national conditions and supports its efforts in safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity. 

With the China-Serbia Free Trade Agreement set to take effect on July 1 this year, the high-standard mutual opening up between China and Serbia will surely enter a new stage. China will continue to import more high-quality agricultural specialties from Serbia. It will invite 300 young Serbians to China on study and exchange programs in the next three years.

China will support 50 young Serbian scientists in taking part in scientific research exchanges in China in the next three years. It is ready to work with Serbia to strengthen cooperation on artificial intelligence (AI) and endeavour to ensure humanity properly develop and utilise AI.

It is important for China and Serbia to jointly reject hegemonism and power politics, and oppose bloc politics or bloc confrontation. The two sides should join hands to uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, practice true multilateralism, and promote international fairness and justice.

President Vučić extended the warmest welcome to President Xi and noted that China is Serbia’s most sincere friend. Although Serbia is a small country, China always fully respects its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and provides valuable support for its economic and social development. President Xi is a great world leader. Under his strong leadership, China has made remarkable achievements. It has become a beacon of development and progress of the world and is playing an increasingly important leading role in international affairs. The Communist Party of China seeks to enhance the well-being of not only the Chinese people, but also people across the world. The Serbian people are full of gratitude and respect for China, especially for President Xi, and feel truly proud to be an ironclad friend to such a great nation. Serbia firmly supports China’s legitimate position on issues concerning its core interests including on Taiwan. There is but one China in the world. Serbia will, without hesitation, continue to unswervingly provide China with firm support.

After the talks, the two Presidents signed the Joint Statement on Deepening and Elevating the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and Building a China-Serbia Community with a Shared Future in the New Era. They also witnessed the exchange of multiple cooperation documents, including on Belt and Road cooperation, green development, digital economy, e-commerce, infrastructure, economic and technical cooperation, information and communication, agri-food, and the media. 

The detailed joint statement signed by the two presidents commits both countries to the defence of their respective core interests.  

The Serbian side reiterated that the development of friendly relations with the People’s Republic of China is one of the main pillars of Serbia’s foreign policy. It reiterates its firm support for the one-China principle, that there is only one China in the world, that Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s territory, that the Government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government representing the whole of China, that it opposes any form of “Taiwan independence” and that it opposes interference in China’s internal affairs, that it will not engage in any form of official exchanges with the Taiwan authorities, and that it firmly supports all efforts made by the Chinese government to realise national reunification.

Both sides oppose the imposition of any formula on the final status of Kosovo. All parties concerned should reach a mutually acceptable solution through dialogue and consultation within the framework of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244. In doing so, Serbia’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity must be fully respected. China supports the efforts of the Republic of Serbia to find a compromise in a peaceful manner during negotiations with representatives of the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo and calls for the implementation of all agreements reached at the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue and the effective protection of the religious and cultural heritage of the region. (Kosovo occupies a special place in the history of Serbia and in particular of the Serbian Orthodox church.)

Reflecting the global trend towards dedollarisation, the two sides are willing to strengthen financial cooperation, support the opening of the Serbian Renminbi (RMB) Clearing Bank as soon as possible, promote the use of local currency settlement in bilateral trade and investment, and encourage financial institutions of the two countries to provide financing support and financial services for trade and investment cooperation.

The two sides agreed that AI (artificial intelligence) should adhere to the principle of attaching equal importance to development and security, bridge the intelligence gap, jointly do a good job in risk prevention, and explore the formation of an international governance framework for AI with the United Nations as the main channel of communication. The two sides are willing to strengthen policy coordination in the field of artificial intelligence, establish relevant dialogue mechanisms, deepen relevant practical cooperation, and jointly promote artificial intelligence technologies. The Serbian side welcomes the Global AI Governance Initiative announced by President Xi Jinping as well as China’s efforts to strengthen the rights of developing countries in global AI governance.

Both sides agreed to jointly develop new productive forces in the light of local conditions, build high-tech industrial cooperation projects, and encourage and promote investment cooperation to this end. They agreed to deepen cooperation in the field of space science and technology. China welcomes the Serbian side to join the International Lunar Research Station.

They further stressed the importance of continuously deepening cooperation in science and technology innovation and will actively promote more practical results in the exchange of young scientists, poverty alleviation through science and technology, technology transfer, joint research, and joint construction of scientific research platforms, and welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Poverty Alleviation through Science and Technology. China welcomes more young Serbian scientists to engage in short-term scientific research in China.

Both countries believe that the Hungarian-Serbian railway modernisation project is of great significance to strengthening Serbian and regional connectivity and that it opens up new prospects for facilitating the flow of people and expanding commodity circulation and economic exchanges in the region. The two sides spoke highly of the achievements made in the construction of the Serbian section of the railway and will continue to work hard to promote the completion of the construction of the section on schedule and contribute to improving the level of regional connectivity.

Following the signing of the joint statement and the various agreements, the two leaders met the press. 

President Xi noted that in 2016, he paid a state visit to Serbia and experienced the warm hospitality of the Serbian leadership and people. He said that it is a fond memory he still cherishes today, and coming back after eight years, he is heartened to see that, under the leadership of President Vučić, Serbian economic and social development has gained a strong momentum, its national strength and international standing have risen markedly, and the people’s standard of living has kept increasing.

China supports Serbia in upholding its independence and following the development path that suits its own conditions. China also supports Serbia’s efforts to safeguard sovereignty and territorial integrity on the Kosovo issue.

President Xi pointed out that a review of history shows that China-Serbia friendship is, “forged through our extraordinary fight together to promote world peace and development, and with the blood and lives of the two peoples. Looking to the future, the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era is a strategic choice made by the two sides. It aims to meet the aspirations of the Chinese and Serbian people for a better life and will be underpinned and sustained by their firm support and extensive participation.”

At the welcoming banquet hosted by President Vučić that followed, Xi Jinping noted that the Chinese people have always cherished a special bond of friendship with Serbia.

“The Yugoslav film The Bridge and the song Bella Ciao, which evoke strong patriotic and anti-fascist sentiments, have been immensely popular in China through the years and became my companion in my youthful days. Other household names in China include athletes Novak Djokovic and Nikola Jokic, and movie director Emir Kusturica.”

(Bella Ciao is originally an Italian song, but such is its popularity and fame in progressive circles that it was chosen as the theme song of The Bridge, a 1969 Yugoslav film depicting the heroic struggle of the communist-led partisans against the Nazi occupation. The film was imported into China, and dubbed into Chinese, in 1977, the year of President Tito’s state visit. Both the film and song became hugely popular in China.)

The following articles were originally published on the website of the Chinese Foreign Ministry and by People’s Daily. The Joint Statement was published in Chinese. It has been machine translated and lightly edited by us.

Arrival Statement by H.E. Xi Jinping at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport, Serbia

May 7 (MFA) — It gives me great pleasure to pay a state visit to the Republic of Serbia at the warm invitation of President Aleksandar Vučić. On behalf of the Chinese government and people, I would like to extend heartfelt greetings and best wishes to the friendly government and people of Serbia.

China and Serbia enjoy profound traditional friendship. Our bilateral relationship has stood the test of changing international environment and become a fine example of state-to-state relations. Since the establishment of the comprehensive strategic partnership in 2016, the bilateral relationship has realized leapfrog development, and achieved historic results. The two countries are bound by rock-solid political mutual trust, and have seen fruitful results in high quality Belt and Road cooperation. We have agreed on comprehensive mutual visa exemption, opened direct flights, and signed a free trade agreement. People-to-people exchanges are becoming more robust. Our ironclad friendship has taken deeper roots in the heart of the two peoples. China and Serbia have rendered each other firm support on issues concerning our respective core interests and major concerns. We have jointly upheld international fairness and justice, and contributed our share to promoting world peace and development. Cooperation between the two countries is rooted in the principle of equality and mutual benefits. It serves the fundamental and long-term interests of both countries, provides strong momentum for our respective development and rejuvenation, brings benefits to the two peoples, and contributes to the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

Standing at a new historical starting point, China will work with Serbia to jointly stay committed to the original aspiration and forge ahead together to open up a new vista in China-Serbia cooperation with stronger momentum, greater scope, and higher quality. I look forward to taking this visit as an opportunity to have in-depth exchange of views with President Vučić on the bilateral relationship and other issues of mutual interest, renew friendship, plan for cooperation, explore development, and draw up a new blueprint for the development of bilateral relations. I am confident that this visit will be a fruitful one and will open up a new chapter in China-Serbia relations.


President Xi Jinping Holds Talks with President Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia

May 8 (MFA) — On the morning of May 8 local time, President Xi Jinping held talks with Serbian President Alexandar Vučić at the Palace of Serbia in Belgrade. The two Presidents announced the decision to deepen and elevate China-Serbia comprehensive strategic partnership and build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era.

The sun shines brightly in Belgrade in May. In front of the Palace of Serbia, the national flags of China and Serbia flutter in the wind, and the guard of honor lined up for the occasion. As President Xi Jinping and Madame Peng Liyuan arrived, they were warmly received by President Aleksandar Vučić and Madame Tamara Vučić.

President Vučić held a grand welcoming ceremony for President Xi. After the two Presidents came to the viewing stand together, the military band played the national anthems of the two countries, and a 10-gun salute was fired. President Xi, accompanied by President Vučić, reviewed the guard of honor. The two Presidents greeted and shook hands with the delegation members of the other side. 

Accompanied by President Vučić, President Xi stepped out onto the platform of the Palace of Serbia. On the square in front of the Palace, 15,000 Serbian people were waving national flags of China and Serbia to express the warmest welcome to President Xi. President Xi waved to the crowd, which burst into jubilant, prolonged applause and cheers. 

After the welcoming ceremony, the two Presidents had a restricted session followed by a plenary meeting. 

President Xi expressed his delight to pay another visit to the beautiful country of Serbia in a span of eight years after the many invitations extended by President Vučić. President Xi said that he was deeply touched when he was greeted at the airport by President Vučić together with many senior government officials who held a grand welcoming ceremony for his visit. He was deeply moved by the genuine friendliness toward China from the Serbian people who are good friends of the Chinese people.

President Xi stressed that the ironclad friendship between China and Serbia has stood the test of the changing international landscape. Such friendship is characterized by profound historical roots, solid political foundation, extensive common interests and strong popular support. Over the past few years, under the leadership of the two Presidents, the bilateral relationship has leapfrogged with historic progress. Since the establishment of a comprehensive strategic partnership in 2016, in particular, the bilateral relationship has been enriched in substance and expanded in scope. It has become an example for China’s friendly relations with other European countries. Actions speak louder than words. China will stand shoulder to shoulder with Serbia, share weal and woe like passengers in the same boat, carry forward the spirit of the ironclad friendship, maintain and grow their friendship, and jointly safeguard fundamental and long-term interests of the two countries. As the two sides pursue their respective national development and revitalization, China will join hands with Serbia to advance the building of a community with a shared future in the new era.

President Xi stressed that Serbia is China’s first comprehensive strategic partner in Central and Eastern Europe. Their bilateral cooperation has injected strong impetus into their respective development and rejuvenation, and brought tangible benefits to the two peoples. Under the new circumstances, Serbia has become the first European country to build with China a community with a shared future. This speaks volumes about the strategic, special and high-level China-Serbia relations. The China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era is an upgrade of the ironclad friendship between China and Serbia. It also represents their common values and objectives, namely, joint pursuit of development, win-win corporation and mutual success. These are the common aspirations of China, Serbia, and all countries that are committed to independence, peace and development. By building a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era, the two sides should keep deepening and expanding high-quality Belt and Road cooperation and collaboration between China and Central and Eastern European countries, thus contributing to their respective modernization.

First, highlighting the strategic nature of the bilateral relationship and keeping to its general direction. China supports Serbia in upholding independence and pursuing a development path suited to its national conditions, and supports its efforts in safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity. The two sides should continue to offer each other firm support, deepen strategic cooperation, and safeguard their respective political security and fundamental interests. 

Second, staying committed to practical cooperation and delivering for the two peoples. High-quality Belt and Road cooperation between China and Serbia has achieved remarkable results. The two sides should steadily advance cooperation in traditional areas such as transportation and energy infrastructure, make sure the entire Serbian section of the Belgrade-Budapest railway go into operation as scheduled, jointly operate well their major cooperation projects, create more small and beautiful livelihood projects, and continue to generate positive economic and social impacts. With the China-Serbia Free Trade Agreement set to take effect on July 1 this year, the high-standard mutual opening up between China and Serbia will surely enter a new stage. China will continue to import more high-quality agricultural specialties from Serbia. It will invite 300 young Serbians to China on study and exchange programs in the next three years. China welcomes the opening of direct flights from Belgrade to Shanghai by Serbia so as to comprehensively deepen people-to-people exchanges. 

Third, opening up new prospects of cooperation with a focus on the innovation dimension in bilateral relations and making innovation cooperation a new growth driver in the relationship. China will support 50 young Serbian scientists in taking part in scientific research exchanges in China in the next three years. It is ready to work with Serbia to strengthen cooperation on artificial intelligence (AI) and endeavor to ensure humanity properly develop and utilize AI. It is important for China and Serbia to jointly reject hegemonism and power politics, and oppose bloc politics or bloc confrontation. The two sides should join hands to uphold the purposes and principles of the U.N. Charter, practice true multilateralism, and promote international fairness and justice.

President Vučić extended the warmest welcome to President Xi and noted that China is Serbia’s most sincere friend. Although Serbia is a small country, China always fully respects its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and provides valuable support for its economic and social development. President Xi is a great world leader. Under his strong leadership, China has made remarkable achievements. It has become a beacon of development and progress of the world and is playing an increasingly important leading role in international affairs. The Communist Party of China seeks to enhance the well-being of not only the Chinese people, but also people across the world. The Serbian people are full of gratitude and respect for China, especially for President Xi, and feel truly proud to be an ironclad friend to such a great nation. Serbia firmly supports China’s legitimate position on issues concerning its core interests including on Taiwan. There is but one China in the world. Serbia will, without hesitation, continue to unswervingly provide China with firm support.

President Vučić noted that China’s investment in and cooperation with Serbia have greatly facilitated the latter’s economic and social development and improved Serbian people’s living standards. Since 2016, in particular, thanks to the personal commitment and support by President Xi, the HBIS Smederevo steel plant has had immensely positive socioeconomic impacts. The transformative changes that had taken place in the steel plant’s development prospects have also boosted the confidence and raised the hope of the people. Serbia’s future is closely linked with China. Serbia looks forward to intensifying exchanges with China in all areas and at all levels, and to strengthening cooperation with China in various fields including infrastructure, new energy, innovation, artificial intelligence and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. Serbia will actively advance high-quality Belt and Road cooperation with China, and work to ensure that the Serbian sector of the Belgrade-Budapest railway will be completed as planned. Serbia welcomes investment cooperation from more Chinese businesses and looks forward to opening more direct flights. Building on the entry-into-force of the bilateral Free Trade Agreement, Serbia is ready to expand economic and trade cooperation with China. The announcement on deepening and elevating the comprehensive strategic partnership and building a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era marks a new milestone in the history of this bilateral relationship. Serbia firmly supports and will actively participate in the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilization Initiative put forth by President Xi. Serbia will stay in close strategic coordination with China in multilateral fora, jointly oppose hegemonism and power politics, uphold the purposes of the U.N. Charter, and defend international fairness and justice.

After the talks, the two Presidents signed the Joint Statement on Deepening and Elevating the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and Building a China-Serbia Community with a Shared Future in the New Era. The two Presidents also witnessed the exchange of multiple cooperation documents including on Belt and Road cooperation, green development, digital economy, e-commerce, infrastructure, economic and technical cooperation, information and communication, agri-food, and the media. 

The two Presidents had a joint meeting with the press.

At noon, President Vučić and Madame Tamara Vučić hosted a grand welcoming banquet in honor of President Xi and Madame Peng Liyuan at the Palace of Serbia.

Cai Qi and Wang Yi, among others, were present at these events.


Joint Statement of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Serbia on Deepening and Enhancing the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and Building a China-Serbia Community with a Shared Future in the New Era

At the invitation of President of the Republic of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić, President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China paid a state visit to the Republic of Serbia on May 7-8, 2024.

The two heads of state held talks in a warm and friendly atmosphere and had an in-depth exchange of views on China-Serbia relations, deepening all-round cooperation between the two countries, jointly building the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), China-CEEC (Central and East European Countries) cooperation, China-EU relations, and international and regional issues of common concern, and reached broad consensus.

The two sides agreed that China and Serbia cherish each other’s solid traditional friendship and close cooperation in specific fields, and that coordination and cooperation in multilateral fields have been fruitful, and that bilateral relations have broad prospects for development. Although the two countries have different histories, cultures, and national conditions, they both uphold the spirit of openness and cooperation, adhere to the principles of fairness and justice, are committed to the happiness of the people and the prosperity of the country, and are committed to the noble cause of peaceful development of humanity. Serbia supports efforts to build a community with a shared future for humanity and stands ready to work with China to implement the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative, and the Global Civilisation Initiative.

The two sides exchanged views on the results of cooperation achieved so far and held that the relevant achievements have further enhanced the iron-clad friendship between the two peoples. The two sides spoke highly of the further deepening of bilateral relations since the signing of the Joint Statement of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Serbia on the Establishment of a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in 2016, and agreed to deepen and enhance the China-Serbia comprehensive strategic partnership based on the principles of independence, mutual respect and trust, win-win cooperation, common development and mutual support, build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era, and strive to benefit the two peoples and make new contributions to the cause of peace and progress for humanity. The parties hereby declare as follows:

  1. China speaks highly of Serbia’s achievements in overall economic and social development and improving people’s livelihood and is pleased to see that Serbia has smoothly advanced its development plans such as “Serbia 2027 – Leap into the Future”, achieved its goals as scheduled, and promoted Serbia’s development and people’s well-being.

    The Serbian side spoke highly of China’s historic achievements and changes in the new era, and wished the Chinese people to build themselves into a modern socialist power in an all-round way under the leadership of the Communist Party of China and achieve the second centenary goal. The Serbian side supports China in comprehensively advancing the building of a strong country and the great cause of national rejuvenation through Chinese-style modernisation.
  2. The two sides believe that close political dialogue at the highest level of the two countries is of great significance to strengthening Sino-Serbian relations and agree to continue to maintain close exchanges between the two heads of state through meetings, telephone calls and exchanges of letters.

    The two sides are willing to give full play to the role of the China-Serbia Legislature Cooperation Committee, the Joint Economic and Trade Committee, the Joint Committee on Science and Technology Cooperation and other mechanisms, strengthen exchanges and cooperation at all levels and in various fields, and continue to deepen the friendship between the two countries.

    The two sides will continue to deepen cooperation between the foreign affairs departments of the two countries, hold regular meetings and consultations at all levels, exchange views on bilateral relations and international and regional hotspot issues of common concern, and coordinate their positions in a timely manner. The two sides will continue to strengthen exchanges between the political parties of the two countries, deepen the exchange of experience in governance, and promote bilateral cooperation in various fields.
  3. The two sides will firmly support each other on issues concerning each other’s core interests on the basis of respecting national sovereignty and territorial integrity and the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries.

    The Serbian side reiterated that the development of friendly relations with the People’s Republic of China is one of the main pillars of Serbia’s foreign policy. The Serbian side reiterates its firm support for the one-China principle, that there is only one China in the world, that Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s territory, that the Government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government representing the whole of China, that it opposes any form of “Taiwan independence” and that it opposes interference in China’s internal affairs, that it will not engage in any form of official exchanges with the Taiwan authorities, and that it firmly supports all efforts made by the Chinese Government to realise national reunification.

    Both sides oppose the imposition of any formula on the final status of Kosovo. All parties concerned should reach a mutually acceptable solution through dialogue and consultation within the framework of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244. In doing so, Serbia’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity must be fully respected. China supports the efforts of the Republic of Serbia to find a compromise in a peaceful manner during negotiations with representatives of the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo and calls for the implementation of all agreements reached at the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue and the effective protection of the religious and cultural heritage of the region. The establishment of a coalition of Serbian cities is an important element of the 2013 Brussels Agreement and must be implemented.

    China understands Serbian’s commitment to joining the European Union and welcomes Serbian’s policy of developing friendly relations and promoting regional cooperation with countries in the region.

    The two sides agreed that on the South China Sea issue, territorial issues and maritime disputes should be peacefully resolved through friendly consultations and negotiations between the parties directly concerned in accordance with bilateral agreements and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea.
  4. The two sides will take the opportunity of the Belt and Road Initiative to enter a new stage of high-quality development, jointly implement the outcomes of the Third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, deepen and expand cooperation in the fields of economy and trade, investment, science and technology, innovation, digital, information and communication, jointly safeguard the safety of projects and enterprise personnel, and lay the foundation for building a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era.

    The two sides will actively implement the Free Trade Agreement between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Serbia and the Medium-Term Action Plan for the Belt and Road Initiative (2023-2025) signed in Beijing in October 2023.

    The two sides welcomed the positive development of China-Serbia trade and were willing to promote the balanced development of bilateral trade. China is willing to expand imports of Serbian high-quality agricultural products and other products, and speed up the examination and approval of inspection and quarantine permits for specific categories of agricultural products and animal products. The two sides are willing to expand the use of China-Europe trains, and China is happy to see more high-quality products from the Serbian side transported to the Chinese market through the China-Europe trains.

    The two sides spoke highly of the positive results achieved in the cooperation between the two countries in the field of infrastructure construction, and welcomed the upgrading of the Agreement between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Serbia on Economic and Technical Cooperation in the Field of Infrastructure, which will further strengthen practical cooperation between the two countries in the fields of transportation infrastructure construction, connectivity, clean energy, industrial investment, agriculture, and economic and trade cooperation zones.

    The two sides are willing to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in the fields of geology and mining, jointly carry out scientific research on karst water resources and karst ecology, promote the construction of monitoring stations in key karst zones in Serbia, and continue to strengthen practical cooperation in the field of evaluation of critical mineral resources, and welcome the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Geology and Minerals between China and Serbia.

    The two sides will implement the Memorandum of Understanding on Promoting the Implementation of the Global Development Initiative, jointly promote the implementation of practical cooperation projects in eight major areas, and promote the early harvest of the Global Development Initiative in Serbia.

    The two sides are willing to effectively carry out cooperation in the field of digital economy and green development, and continue to promote the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding on Promoting Investment Cooperation in the Field of Green Development and the Memorandum of Understanding on Strengthening Investment Cooperation in the Field of Digital Economy signed in 2022 by giving full play to the role of the China-Serbia Investment Cooperation Working Group. We welcome the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Green and Sustainable Development Cooperation and the Memorandum of Understanding on Digital Economy Cooperation, and actively promote the implementation of specific cooperation projects. At the same time, as participants in the Framework Initiative for International Economic and Trade Cooperation on Digital Economy and Green Development, the two sides are willing to work with all parties to actively carry out practical economic and trade cooperation in relevant fields.

    The two sides are willing to strengthen financial cooperation, support the opening of the Serbian RMB Clearing Bank as soon as possible, promote the use of local currency settlement in bilateral trade and investment, and encourage financial institutions of the two countries to provide financing support and financial services for trade and investment cooperation.

    The two sides attach great importance to cooperation in the field of e-commerce and welcome the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on E-commerce Cooperation between China and Serbia.

    The two sides attach great importance to cooperation in the field of information and communication technology, and believe that further strengthening cooperation in the field of information and communication technology is of great significance to strengthening connectivity and deepening the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Serbia. China is ready to strengthen bilateral cooperation with Serbia in areas such as communication infrastructure, 5G, cloud computing, big data and smart photovoltaics, and promote high-quality development in the field of information and communication.

    The two sides agreed that AI (artificial intelligence) should adhere to the principle of attaching equal importance to development and security, bridge the intelligence gap, jointly do a good job in risk prevention, and explore the formation of an international governance framework for AI with the United Nations as the main channel of communication. The two sides are willing to strengthen policy coordination in the field of artificial intelligence, establish relevant dialogue mechanisms, deepen relevant practical cooperation, and jointly promote artificial intelligence technologies. The Serbian side welcomes the Global AI Governance Initiative announced by President Xi Jinping and China’s efforts to strengthen the rights of developing countries in global AI governance.

    The two sides agreed to jointly develop new productive forces in the light of local conditions, build high-tech industrial cooperation projects, and encourage and promote investment cooperation to this end. The two sides agreed to deepen cooperation in the field of space science and technology. China welcomes the Serbian side to join the International Lunar Research Station.

    The two sides stressed the importance of continuously deepening cooperation in science and technology innovation and will actively promote more practical results in the exchange of young scientists, poverty alleviation through science and technology, technology transfer, joint research, and joint construction of scientific research platforms, and welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Poverty Alleviation through Science and Technology. China welcomes more young Serbian scientists to engage in short-term scientific research in China.

    The two sides are willing to jointly promote the construction of an international cooperation mechanism for natural disaster prevention and emergency management under the Belt and Road Initiative, implement the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Natural Disaster Prevention and Emergency Management and the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Work Safety, and continue to deepen practical cooperation in disaster management and production safety between the two countries.
  5. The two sides believe that the Hungarian-Serbian railway modernisation project is of great significance to strengthening Serbian and regional connectivity, and opens up new prospects for facilitating the flow of people and expanding commodity circulation and economic exchanges in the region. The two sides spoke highly of the achievements made in the construction of the Serbian section of the railway and will continue to work hard to promote the completion of the construction of the section on schedule and contribute to improving the level of regional connectivity. China is willing to encourage its enterprises to continue to participate in regional connectivity projects in accordance with business and market principles. The two sides are willing to strengthen cooperation to ensure the safety of the railway passing through the Serbian territory.
  6. The two sides attach great importance to cooperation in the fields of health and biotechnology, and China is ready to strengthen bilateral and multilateral cooperation with Serbia in the fields of disease prevention and control, health emergency response, telemedicine and traditional medicine, jointly promote the building of a global community of health for all, and actively participate in the construction of relevant projects in the biotechnology industrial park in Serbia.
  7. The two sides attach great importance to and are willing to strengthen cooperation in the fields of culture, education, sports, tourism, radio and television, journalism and communication, support two-way exchanges between students, support exchanges and cooperation between institutions of higher learning of the two countries, and expand cooperation in the fields of film and television, media, and online audio-visual.

    The two sides spoke highly of the role played by the China-Serbia Agreement on Mutual Exemption of Visas for Holders of Ordinary Passports signed in 2016 in consolidating friendly relations, promoting bilateral cooperation, and promoting people-to-people exchanges and tourism, and are willing to create more convenient conditions for people-to-people exchanges between the two countries. The two sides expressed satisfaction with the operation of direct flights between China and Serbia and encouraged the air transport enterprises of the two countries to add more direct routes according to market principles. They agreed to continue to implement the Agreement between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Serbia on Reciprocal Recognition and Exchange of Motor Vehicle Driving Licenses, and further facilitate the citizens of the two countries to work and live in each other’s countries.
  8. The two sides spoke highly of the positive role of the China-CEEC cooperation mechanism. The Serbian side highly recognises, fully supports and is willing to continue to actively participate in various areas of cooperation within the framework of the China-CEEC cooperation mechanism. The two sides will work with other CEE countries to promote the sustained and healthy development of cooperation within the mechanism.
  9. The two sides stressed the need to abide by the international order based on international law, including the UN Charter, respect the principles of independence, equality, sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, uphold multilateral cooperation with the United Nations at its core, and uphold true multilateralism.

    The two sides advocate an equal and orderly multipolar world and inclusive economic globalisation, uphold the equality of all countries, big or small, and oppose hegemonism and power politics, as well as all forms of unilateralism and protectionism.

    The two sides support the leading role of the United Nations in resolving global issues, safeguarding world peace, and promoting common development, and advocate strengthening the role and authority of the United Nations and its Security Council. The two sides support the reform of the United Nations and its Security Council to increase the representation of developing countries and advocate that Member States should seek a “package” solution and reach consensus through democratic consultations on the basis of broad consensus. The two sides are willing to strengthen coordination and cooperation in the United Nations and other international organisations to jointly promote global and regional peace, stability, development and prosperity.

    The two sides believe that the promotion and protection of human rights is the common cause of all humanity, and that all countries should cooperate in promoting and protecting human rights on the basis of mutual respect and equality, and should not politicise and instrumentalise human rights issues and use them to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. The two sides will strengthen communication and cooperation in multilateral human rights forums and promote the development of global human rights governance in a more just manner.
  10. The two sides support the efforts of the international community to promote a political settlement of the Ukraine crisis and a ceasefire between Palestine and Israel and call on all parties to prevent further spillover effects and maintain regional peace and stability. The two sides reaffirmed their opposition to bloc confrontation and opposition to any country or bloc that instigates conflicts and undermines the security interests of other countries.
  11. The two sides condemn and oppose terrorism in all its forms and emphasise that the international community should continue to strengthen counter-terrorism cooperation, give full play to the central coordinating role of the United Nations, and use comprehensive means to eradicate both the symptoms and the root causes of terrorism. The two sides oppose the adoption of double standards and the politicisation and instrumentalisation of the issue of counter-terrorism. The two sides will continue to strengthen counter-terrorism cooperation bilaterally and within multilateral frameworks such as the United Nations.

    The two sides believe that expanding cooperation among the judicial, law enforcement, and security departments is of great significance to deepening security cooperation between the two countries and will continue to promote cooperation in combating human trafficking, telecommunications and network fraud, economic crimes, and cross-border corruption.

    The two sides are willing to strengthen inter-departmental contacts and cooperation and deepen practical cooperation in port entry-exit border inspection, facilitation of personnel exchanges, crackdown on illegal immigration activities, and law enforcement capacity building.
  12. The two sides believe that President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the Republic of Serbia and the fruitful talks and exchanges between the two heads of state are of great significance to further promoting the development of China-Serbia friendly relations.

President Xi Jinping expressed his sincere gratitude to President Vučić and the Serbian people for their grand, cordial, and friendly reception, and invited President Vučić to visit China again. President Vučić expressed his gratitude and happily accepted the invitation.

This Declaration was signed in Belgrade on 8 May 2024 in two copies, each in Chinese and Serbian, both texts of which are equally authentic.


President Xi Jinping and President Aleksandar Vučić Jointly Meet the Press

May 8 (MFA) — At noon on May 8 local time, President Xi Jinping and President Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia jointly met the press after their talks at the Palace of Serbia in Belgrade. 

At the outset, on behalf of the Chinese government and people, President Xi extended sincere greetings and best regards to President Vučić and the Serbian government, and to the brotherly people of Serbia.

President Xi noted that in 2016, he paid a state visit to Serbia and experienced the warm hospitality of the Serbian leadership and people. He said that it is a fond memory he still cherishes today, and coming back after eight years, he is heartened to see that under the leadership of President Vučić, the Serbian economic and social development has gained a strong momentum, its national strength and international standing have risen markedly, and the people’s standard of living has kept increasing. As true friends and good partners, China and Serbia enjoy rock-solid political mutual trust, upgraded practical cooperation, close and effective coordination on multilateral affairs, and an ironclad friendship that’s been growing from strength to strength.

President Xi described how touching it was that President Vučić and his wife, the prime minister, former president, speaker of the parliament, foreign minister and others welcomed him and his wife at the airport last night, and arranged special Serbian performances. He was again moved by the genuine friendliness of the Serbian people toward China and the Chinese people when he saw the huge crowds at the grand and heartwarming welcoming ceremony arranged by President Vučić in the morning. Before the press event, President Vučić and he had an in-depth exchange of views, in a cordial and friendly atmosphere, on the China-Serbia relationship and other issues of mutual interest, and they reached new, important and extensive consensus.

—The two leaders announced together to build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era, which will open up a new chapter in the history of China-Serbia relations. Eight years ago, Serbia became China’s first comprehensive strategic partner in Central and Eastern Europe. Today, Serbia becomes the first European country to build a community with a shared future with China. This speaks volumes about the strategic, special and high-level relationship between the two countries.

—The two leaders agreed to enhance strategic communication to guide the building of the China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era. The two sides will firmly support each other’s core interests and major concerns, and cement the political foundation for building this community. China supports Serbia in upholding its independence and following the development path that suits its own conditions. China supports Serbia’s efforts to safeguard sovereignty and territorial integrity on the Kosovo issue.

—The two leaders witnessed together the signing of multiple cooperation documents which will empower win-win cooperation between the two countries. High-quality Belt and Road cooperation between China and Serbia has produced substantial outcomes. The two sides will continue to advance quality and productive cooperation in a broad range of areas. This will provide a strong impetus to the economic and social development of the two countries. It is also a concrete step to promote universally beneficial and inclusive economic globalization.

—The two leaders agreed to steadily advance cooperation in traditional areas of strength such as transportation and energy infrastructure, and to make innovation cooperation a new growth driver for the bilateral relationship. The two sides will increase people-to-people exchanges in all sectors, fully advance cooperation in culture, education, sports, tourism and at the subnational level, and strengthen inter-party interactions and experience sharing on governance. The two sides will jointly implement the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilization Initiative, and advance the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. The two sides will advocate fairness and justice, and jointly oppose hegemonism and power politics.

President Xi announced the first batch of six practical steps China will take to support the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era.

First, as a result of the two sides’ joint efforts, the China-Serbia Free Trade Agreement will take effect on July 1 this year. 

Second, China supports Serbia in hosting the Specialized Expo 2027, and will send a delegation to attend the event. Chinese businesses will also be encouraged to take part in relevant construction projects. 

Third, China will import more high-quality agricultural specialties from Serbia. Procedures for the export of dried plums and blueberry to China have already been completed, and the restrictions related to highly pathogenic avian influenza have been lifted. 

Fourth, China will support 50 young Serbian scientists in taking part in scientific research exchange in China in the next three years. 

Fifth, China will invite 300 young Serbians to study in China in the next three years. 

Sixth, China welcomes the opening of direct flights from Belgrade to Shanghai by Serbia, and encourages the two countries’ airlines to open direct flights from Belgrade to Guangzhou.

President Xi pointed out that a review of history shows that China-Serbia friendship is forged through our extraordinary fight together to promote world peace and development, and with the blood and lives of the two peoples. Looking to the future, the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era is a strategic choice made by the two sides. It aims to meet the aspirations of the Chinese and Serbian people for a better life, and will be underpinned and sustained by their firm support and extensive participation. China will stand side by side with Serbia to jointly embark on the new journey toward a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era.

President Vučić noted that it is of significant importance to Serbia that President Xi pays another visit after eight years. Serbia-China cooperation has produced fruitful outcomes and brought tangible benefits to the Serbian people. He described his talks with President Xi as in-depth, extensive and inspiring. He and President Xi signed a joint statement announcing the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era. He thanked President Xi for announcing the many practical measures to boost Serbia-China cooperation. He said Serbia takes proud in having such a great friend as China and in the new characterization of the Serbia-China relationship, and has every confidence in the future of this relationship. Serbia will continue to firmly stand with China on all issues concerning China’s core interests. The ironclad friendship between Serbia and China will not be disrupted or broken by any force.

Cai Qi, Wang Yi, among others, attended the event.


President Xi Jinping Attends the Welcoming Banquet Held by President Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia

May 8 (MFA) — At noon on May 8 local time, President Xi Jinping and his wife Madame Peng Liyuan attended the welcoming banquet held by Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić and his wife at the Palace of Serbia in Belgrade.

Amid warm applause, President Xi delivered a toast.

President Xi pointed out that Serbia, located on “the west of the East, and east of the West,” has long been known as “the gateway to the Balkans.” For centuries, this land has been a meeting place of diverse civilizations on the Eurasian continent, which in many ways shaped the diligent, kind, and unyielding character of the Serbian people. Now, under the leadership of President Vučić, the government and people of Serbia are working hard and making proud achievements in economic and social development and living standards. The Serbian people have great confidence and pride as a nation. Bright and broad prospects lay ahead for Serbia’s development and rejuvenation.

President Xi noted that the Chinese people have always cherished a special bond of friendship with Serbia. The Yugoslav film The Bridge and the song Bella Ciao, which evoke strong patriotic and anti-Fascism sentiments, have been immensely popular in China through the years and became my companion in my youthful days. Other household names in China include athletes Novak Djokovic and Nikola Jokic, and movie director Emir Kusturica. In recent years, the high-quality Belt and Road cooperation between China and Serbia has seen robust growth and fruitful outcomes. Such cooperation is a good example of building a community with a shared future for mankind.

President Xi pointed out that he and President Vučić had just had comprehensive and in-depth talks and reached a lot of important consensus. They signed a joint statement announcing the building of a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era. This is a new historic milestone in China-Serbia relations. China-Serbia relations now stand at a brand new historical starting point and enjoy precious opportunities and bright prospects. China will work together with the friendly people of Serbia and make tireless efforts to build a China-Serbia community with a shared future in the new era.

Cai Qi, Wang Yi, among others, attended the event.

Cooperatives in China: current status and prospects for significant growth

The following article by Ali Al-Assam explores the issue of cooperatives in China, drawing on insights from the recent Friends of Socialist China delegation.

Ali – who is Managing Director of the NewsSocial Cooperative, as well as being a lifelong activist in the communist, anti-imperialist and progressive movements in both Britain and Iraq – describes the delegates’ visit to the Lu Wei Agricultural Machinery Farmers’ Professional Cooperative in Jilin, “a voluntary collective that now oversees 667 hectares, commanding 90 percent of the village’s farmable area.” Ali observes that the cooperative has allowed for greater mechanisation of agriculture, and has led to a 20 percent increase in income for participating families. The cooperative runs in a highly democratic manner, with profit-sharing decided collectively and major decisions made at general meetings. Ali observes that the cooperative “embodies a microcosm of efficiency, offering end-to-end services from ploughing to grain processing.”

The Chinese government is encouraging such cooperatives by providing subsidies for the purchase of agricultural machinery. The number of agricultural cooperatives is on the rise in China, and “the Chinese leadership has made exceptional efforts to nurture these cooperatives, advocating for the adoption of cutting-edge technology and sustainable farming practices… President Xi Jinping has underscored the significance of steering small-scale farmers towards modern agriculture to safeguard food security, a move he deems foundational for the nation’s modern socialist aspirations.”

This article was first published in English on NewsSocial and in Arabic on Mushtarek.

During my recent visit to China from April 14th to 24th, 2024, I had the opportunity to engage with seasoned members of the cooperative movement, among whom were British nationals who live in China. A highlight of my trip was spending a substantial part of a day, together with colleagues from ‘Friends of Socialist China’, exploring an agricultural cooperative in the north-eastern Jilin province.

The law on Specialised Farmer Cooperatives was passed by the National People’s Congress, coming into effect on July 1 2007. As stated by Tim Zachernuk In his excellent study of cooperatives in China: “The law acknowledges international cooperative experience as codified in the cooperative principles formulated by the International Cooperative Alliance. The law states that cooperatives are independent and autonomous organisations, should be democratically managed, and that their primary aim is to serve the interests of their members. There are no contradictions between the ICA principles and the Chinese law. A cooperative adhering to ICA principles would be perfectly legitimate under the cooperative law.” Tim Zachernuk pointed to some difficulties in applying the law which seems to have been resolved to some degree since 2015.  

The Chinese government, particularly since 2020, has increasingly championed the cooperative model as an engine for employment enhancement, income growth for workers, and the stabilisation of rural and urban economies. These initiatives often dovetail with broader reforms aimed at reforming both privately owned and  state-owned enterprises and bolstering employee ownership and governance participation.

China’s cooperative landscape is experiencing robust growth and enjoying strong government support. This growth is not only vast but also offers a multitude of learning and partnership opportunities. A notable advancement likely to further solidify democratic practices within cooperatives is the enactment of the Revised Company Law, set to take effect on July 1, 2024. This law is pioneering at the national level in that it establishes the employee representative assembly as the fundamental mechanism of corporate governance. For an in-depth understanding, refer to Dr. Guank Li’s comprehensive analysis of the law.

Insights into China’s Cooperative Landscape

The latest data offers a snapshot of the scope and impact of cooperatives across China:

Continue reading Cooperatives in China: current status and prospects for significant growth

Forging the broadest solidarity against US imperialist intervention in the South China Sea

Communist media in North America have spoken out against the latest moves by US imperialism to strengthen its web of alliances in the Pacific region, targeted principally on the People’s Republic of China. 

On April 19, Otis Grotewohl, reporting on the April 11 meeting of US President Biden with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishima and President of the Philippines, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. wrote in Workers’ World that:

“While the White House claimed the meeting focused on ‘peace and security,’ Biden’s own ‘tough-talk’ description of the gathering could be perceived as a threatening gesture towards China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, as well as all working-class and indigenous peoples residing near the Indo-Pacific and South China Seas.”

He added:

“The summit was met by a militant protest from a Philippine-led coalition that includes BAYAN USA, Malaya Movement USA and the Tuloy Ang Laban Coalition. Organisers of the event said they were particularly appalled by the showing of Marcos Jr., son of the former right-wing dictator, Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

“The elder Marcos was president from 1965-86 and ruled the Philippine islands under martial law from 1972 until 1981, with the full blessing of US and European imperialists. Many labour unionists and leftists disappeared and were gruesomely slain during Marcos’ ‘ironclad’ rule.”

He also outlined the history of the RIMPAC naval exercises, which have been held since 1971 and are the world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise. A final planning conference for the 2024 exercise was held at the Point Loma Annex Naval Base in San Diego on March 25-28. According to Grotewohl:

“Washington claims it is not using the event as a forum for provocations against the governments of China, DPRK or Russia, but its actions tell a different story. That China, DPRK and Russia are not allowed to attend RIMPAC exercises, but Israel is, exposes the hypocrisy of US leaders.”

Meanwhile, the April edition of TML Monthly, published online by the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) (CPCML) detailed the protests of national democratic organisations in the Philippines against the 39th US-Philippines Balikatan Joint Military Exercise, which began on April 22 and will end on May 18. These are the largest such war games to date, involving more than 17,000 US and Philippines soldiers, almost twice as many as last year.

This year, the Australian Defence Force and French navy are also joining the war games. Eighteen other countries, including Canada, are participating as “observers.”

Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan), a broad alliance of progressive and patriotic Filipino organisations, called the military war games “a shameful proof of the subservient foreign policy of the administration of Ferdinand Marcos Jr. by allowing the increased presence and intervention of genocide-enabling and imperialist foreign military forces.”

The Philippine human rights organisation Karapatan also condemned Balikatan 2024, pointing out that the heavy presence of US troops on the Philippines islands is a violation of the sovereignty of the Filipino people and a provocation against China which could lead to a military conflict between the two countries with people of the Philippines in the middle. Karapatan pointedly denounced the recent first-time deployment of the US mid-range Typhon missile system which is capable of reaching the Chinese mainland. The missiles were introduced in the context of the Balikatan war games, Karapatan noted, further signalling the US intention “to use Philippine territory as a launching pad for hostile acts against China.”

Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment also underscored that the US plans to use the Philippines as cannon fodder in confronting China.  “History has also shown that US intervention has always led to war and tragedy – and widespread, long-term environmental destruction, as well. These have been seen in the US-led wars in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Ukraine, and Palestine,” the organisation said.

Bayan called on the Filipino people to resist the Balikatan war drills, oppose the US provocations in the region and expel US military facilities and other foreign troops in the country. 

For its part, Karapatan called on the freedom-loving people of the Philippines and the world to “forge the broadest solidarity front against US imperialist intervention and war-mongering in the South China Sea and in other areas of the world.”

The following articles were originally published by Workers World and TML Monthly.

U.S.-led ‘Trilateral Summit’ promotes militarism in the Pacific

President Joe Biden met with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishima and the President of the Philippines, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., on April 11. Dubbed as the “Philippines-U.S.-Japan Trilateral Summit,” the event was held in Washington, D.C.

While the White House claimed the meeting focused on “peace and security,” Biden’s own “tough-talk” description of the gathering could be perceived as a threatening gesture towards China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, as well as all working-class and Indigenous peoples residing near the Indo-Pacific and South China Seas.

Continue reading Forging the broadest solidarity against US imperialist intervention in the South China Sea

Chinese FM holds talks with Central African counterpart

The Central African Republic (CAR) is one of a number of African countries that are increasingly asserting their independence, having long languished under French neo-colonial domination, in particular, decades after achieving formal independence.

It is against this background that CAR Foreign Minister Sylvie Baipo-Temon recently visited China at the invitation of her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi.

Meeting Baipo-Temon on April 15, Wang said that always regards the Central African Republic as a good friend and partner. 

Alluding to the imperialist pressure on the country, he added that China will continue to support the Central African Republic in exploring a development path suited to its national conditions, and speak up for the country at the UN Security Council and on multilateral occasions.

He added that China is willing to enhance cooperation with the Central African Republic in such areas as infrastructure construction, green development, medical and health care, education and training, and security and law enforcement. 

Baipo-Temon expressed appreciation for China’s adherence to the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, saying that the Central African Republic abides firmly by the one-China principle and supports China firmly in safeguarding its core interests.

The Central African Republic is also a firm supporter of the global initiatives that China has proposed, and is willing to enhance friendly cooperation with China in various fields to achieve win-win results, she said, adding that the country will participate in the next meeting of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, due to be held in Beijing in September, to promote the construction of an Africa-China community with a shared future.

The following article was originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

BEIJING, April 15 (Xinhua) — Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks with Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Central African Republic Sylvie Baipo-Temon in Beijing on Monday, with both sides pledging to enhance cooperation in various fields.

Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, noted that China always regards the Central African Republic as a good friend and partner. He said that China will continue to support the Central African Republic in exploring a development path suited to its national conditions, and speak up for the country at the UN Security Council and on multilateral occasions.

China will work with the Central African Republic to deepen strategic mutual trust and friendly cooperation, and make joint efforts to build a strategic partnership, Wang added.

He said that China is willing to enhance cooperation with the Central African Republic in such areas as infrastructure construction, green development, medical and health care, education and training, and security and law enforcement. China hopes that the Central African Republic will create a safe environment for Chinese enterprises to invest and do business in the country.

Baipo-Temon expressed appreciation for China’s adherence to the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, saying that the Central African Republic abides firmly by the one-China principle and supports China firmly in safeguarding its core interests.

The Central African Republic is also a firm supporter of the global initiatives that China has proposed, and it is willing to enhance friendly cooperation with China in various fields to achieve win-win results, she said, adding that the country will participate in the next meeting of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation to promote the construction of an Africa-China community with a shared future.

After their talks, the two foreign ministries issued a joint statement on promoting the implementation of the three global initiatives.

China-France joint statement on the situation in the Middle East

Chinese President Xi Jinping concluded a three-day state visit to France, the first leg of his European tour, on May 7. 

Considering the present global situation, one of the most significant outcomes of Xi’s visit was the release of a 10-point joint statement by the two countries on the situation in the Middle East.

It states that, as permanent members of the United States Security Council, China and France are working together to find constructive solutions, based on international law, to the challenges and threats to international security and stability.

It adds that they “condemn all violations of international humanitarian law, including all acts of terrorist violence and indiscriminate attacks against civilians. They recall the absolute imperative of protecting civilians in Gaza in accordance with international humanitarian law. The two heads of state expressed their opposition to an Israeli offensive on Rafah, which would lead to a humanitarian disaster on a larger scale, as well as to forced displacement of Palestinian civilians.”

The two presidents also stressed that an immediate and sustainable ceasefire is urgently needed to enable the delivery of large-scale humanitarian aid and the protection of civilians in the Gaza Strip. 

And they called on all parties to “refrain from unilateral measures on the ground that might aggravate tensions, and in this respect condemned Israel’s policy of settlement construction, which violates international law and constitutes a major obstacle to lasting peace as well as to the possibility of establishing a viable and contiguous State of Palestine.” 

Whilst some of the language also indicates a degree of compromise on China’s part, the overall standpoint adopted by France in this joint statement stands in sharp contrast to the fulsome support extended to Israel’s genocidal war of aggression by US and British imperialism. It therefore clearly refutes the naive and dogmatic view of some on the contemporary left who assert, in flights of rhetoric, that contradictions between imperialist powers no longer exist and can therefore not be utilised. 

In clear contrast to such idealist viewpoints, China’s principled and skilful diplomacy proceeds from the Leninist standpoint, clearly articulated by the founder of the Soviet workers’ state in in his famous article ‘Left-Wing’ Communism: an Infantile Disorder

“To carry on a war for the overthrow of the international bourgeoisie, a war which is a hundred times more difficult, protracted and complex than the most stubborn of ordinary wars between states, and to renounce in advance any change of tack, or any utilisation of a conflict of interests (even if temporary) among one’s enemies, or any conciliation or compromise with possible allies (even if they are temporary, unstable, vacillating or conditional allies)—is that not ridiculous in the extreme?”

We reprint below the full text of the China-France joint statement. It was originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

At the invitation of H.E. Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China, paid a state visit to France from May 5 to 7, 2024. The two heads of state had an in-depth exchange of views on the situation in the Middle East:

1. As permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, China and France are working together to find constructive solutions, based on international law, to the challenges and threats to international security and stability.

2. China and France condemn all violations of international humanitarian law, including all acts of terrorist violence and indiscriminate attacks against civilians. They recall the absolute imperative of protecting civilians in Gaza in accordance with international humanitarian law. The two heads of state expressed their opposition to an Israeli offensive on Rafah, which would lead to a humanitarian disaster on a larger scale, as well as to forced displacement of Palestinian civilians.

3. The two heads of state stressed that an immediate and sustainable ceasefire is urgently needed to enable the delivery of large-scale humanitarian aid and the protection of civilians in the Gaza Strip. They called for the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages and the guarantee of humanitarian access to meet their medical and other humanitarian needs, as well as respect for international law with regard to all detainees. They called for the immediate and effective implementation of relevant United Nations resolutions, in particular Security Council resolutions 2712, 2720 and 2728. This is the only credible way to guarantee peace and security for all and to ensure that neither Palestinians nor Israelis will suffer from the horrors they have experienced since the attack on October 7, 2023.

4. The two heads of state called for the effective opening of all necessary corridors and crossing points to enable rapid, safe, sustainable and unhindered delivery of humanitarian aid throughout the Gaza Strip. The two heads of state stressed the importance of strengthening the coordination of international humanitarian efforts.

5. The two heads of state called on all parties to refrain from unilateral measures on the ground that might aggravate tensions, and in this respect condemned Israel’s policy of settlement construction, which violates international law and constitutes a major obstacle to lasting peace as well as to the possibility of establishing a viable and contiguous State of Palestine. The two heads of state reiterated that the future governance of Gaza cannot be dissociated from a comprehensive political settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict based on the two-State solution.

6. The two heads of state called for a decisive and irreversible relaunch of a political process to concretely implement the two-State solution, with Israel and Palestine living side by side in peace and security, both with Jerusalem as their capital, and the establishment of a viable, independent and sovereign State of Palestine based on the 1967 borders. The two heads of state reaffirmed their commitment to this solution, which is the only way to meet the legitimate aspirations of the Israeli and Palestinian people for lasting peace and security.

7. The two heads of state also expressed deep concern over the risk of escalation in the region, and called for the prevention of regional turbulence. China and France are working with their partners to deescalate the situation and call on all parties to exercise restraint.

8. China and France reaffirm their commitment to promoting a political and diplomatic solution to the Iranian nuclear issue. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action concluded in 2015 is a major outcome of multilateral diplomacy. The two countries are concerned about the risks of escalation, recall the importance of cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency and facilitation of diplomatic efforts, and reaffirm their commitment to safeguarding the international non-proliferation regime and promoting peace and stability in the Middle East.

9. The two heads of state stressed the importance of safeguarding freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, and called for an immediate cessation of attacks on civilian vessels to safeguard maritime security and global trade and prevent regional tensions and humanitarian and environmental risks.

10. The two heads of state called for the observance of the Olympic Truce during the 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Olympic Truce calls on all parties to stop hostilities throughout the Games. As conflicts spread and tensions rise, the Truce is an opportunity to work toward a durable resolution of conflicts in full respect of international law. 

Full text of Xi’s signed article in Serbian media

As part of his May 5-10 state visits to three European countries, Chinese President Xi Jinping began a visit to Serbia on May 7, following the conclusion of his visit to France. It is his second state visit to the Balkan country, his previous one being in 2016. 

Coinciding with his arrival, the Serbian daily newspaper Politika published an article by Xi, hailing the “ironclad friendship” between the two countries and peoples. The Chinese President wrote:

“There has always been an affinity between Chinese and Serbian peoples despite the long distance between us. During the bitter Anti-Fascist War and our respective nation-building in the last century, the Chinese and Serbian peoples forged a strong friendship that extends through time and space… Whatever changes in the international landscape, China and Serbia remain true friends and good partners. Our ironclad friendship is ever-growing, setting a model for state-to-state and people-to-people interactions.”

Recalling how the two countries had come together and helped each other during the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, Xi states: “China provided assistance, prioritised the provision of multiple shipments of protective medical supplies, and sent medical experts to Serbia… Nongovernmental organisations in Serbia voluntarily donated masks and other supplies to the Chinese people. Our mutual support in challenging times testifies to our invaluable brotherly friendship.”

Xi also alluded to the attempts to permanently separate Serbia’s Kosovo region, and the pressures exerted on Serbia by certain powers regarding its external relations in particular, writing:

“We support Serbia’s efforts to uphold its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and oppose any attempt by any forces to interfere in Serbia’s internal affairs.”

What makes Xi’s visit to Serbia particularly significant this time is that May 7, 2024, marks exactly a quarter century since US-led NATO forces bombed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, killing three journalists, during their illegal war against the then socialist Yugoslavia. In his article, Xi recalls this as follows:

“Our ironclad friendship has withstood the test of blood and fire, and shines even brighter in the new era… Twenty-five years ago today, NATO flagrantly bombed the Chinese embassy in Yugoslavia, killing three Chinese journalists – Ms. Shao Yunhuan, Mr. Xu Xinghu and his wife Zhu Ying. This we should never forget. The Chinese people cherish peace, but we will never allow such tragic history to repeat itself. The China-Serbia friendship, forged with the blood of our compatriots, will stay in the shared memory of the Chinese and Serbian peoples, and will inspire us to march forward with big strides.”

We reprint below the full text of President Xi’s article in Politika. It was originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

May the Light of Our Ironclad Friendship Shine on the Path of China-Serbia Cooperation

Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China

When summer comes, all beings flourish. This is what makes summer the season of hope. I will pay a state visit to the Republic of Serbia at the invitation of President Aleksandar Vučić. This will be my second visit to your country, a land of beauty and legends, as President of the People’s Republic of China. The sweet scenes that prevailed during my last visit eight years ago remain very much alive in my mind. The close cooperation between our two countries over the past eight years has delivered fruitful outcomes. I look forward to meeting with President Aleksandar Vučić and other Serbian leaders and friends to renew our friendship, explore ways of cooperation, and make the ironclad friendship between China and Serbia more dynamic.

There has always been an affinity between Chinese and Serbian peoples despite the long distance between us. During the bitter Anti-Fascist War and our respective nation-building in the last century, the Chinese and Serbian peoples forged a strong friendship that extends through time and space. Amid the ongoing transformations unseen in a century in the world, our mutual support remains as strong as ever, our cooperation is closer, and our exchanges and mutual learning more substantive. Whatever changes in the international landscape, China and Serbia remain true friends and good partners. Our ironclad friendship is ever-growing, setting a model for state-to-state and people-to-people interactions.

Continue reading Full text of Xi’s signed article in Serbian media

Delegates from Britain, Ireland and the US learn about the past, present and future of Socialist China

The first exclusive Friends of Socialist China delegation to the People’s Republic of China took place from 14 to 24 April 2024.

Invited by the China NGO Network for International Exchanges (CNIE), which works under the direction of the International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (IDCPC), 14 comrades (11 from Britain, two from the United States and one from Ireland) visited Beijing, Hangzhou and Jiaxing (Zhejiang province), and Changchun and Siping (Jilin province). The packed program featured visits to public service and community facilities, historic revolutionary sites and museums, political, scientific, cultural, industrial, and agricultural organisations, exhibition centres and cooperatives, and famous scenic spots among others.

Serving the people

Our first site visit, on 15 April, was to the Beijing headquarters of the ‘12345’ government service hotline, where 1,500 employees (mostly CPC members) work in shifts to provide a single point of access for any and all problems and queries – for example, rubbish being left on the street, heating not working, or older people not receiving food deliveries. The service aims to provide “a bridge connecting people, party and government”, and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, free of charge. We were told that the Beijing HQ typically receives 60,000 calls a day, and 90 percent of these are resolved to the user’s satisfaction. The service in some form has been operating for 30 years, with substantial improvements over that period, including most recently support for more languages allowing visiting tourists and international residents to utilise the hotline.

Thanking our hosts at the 12345 hotline HQ, head of delegation Keith Bennett observed that the service embodies three important characteristics of the Chinese Revolution. Firstly, it represents a modern implementation of the slogan ‘serve the people’. Secondly, it is consistent with the mass line: “take the ideas of the masses (scattered and unsystematic ideas) and concentrate them (through study turn them into concentrated and systematic ideas), then go to the masses and propagate and explain these ideas until the masses embrace them as their own, hold fast to them and translate them into action, and test the correctness of these ideas in such action”. Lastly, the 12345 service is an example of using modern technology in order to carry out social investigation, “investigating the conditions of each social class in real life”. The use of big data allows the local government to notice trends in residents’ enquiries and proactively solve problems and improve services.

At the Beijing headquarters of the ‘12345’ government service hotline

The spirit of serving the people was also evident at the Party-masses Service Centre of Jiaxing, Zhejiang, which we visited on 19 April. Opened in 2021, it’s a hub for training, exhibitions, volunteer services, social organisation incubation, and provision of mental health services. Delegates were amazed to learn that people can register for counselling and get an appointment booked for the next day – free of charge. Also impressive were the meeting spaces and lecture halls that could be hired free of charge for use by the local community. The therapy is framed within a context of public health, and is based on the principle that “only with peace of mind can the people and the country be safe.”

Continue reading Delegates from Britain, Ireland and the US learn about the past, present and future of Socialist China