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. 

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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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

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.

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.

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

China and Bolivia share the same goals of opposing hegemony and upholding justice

Bolivian Foreign Minister Celinda Sosa Lunda visited China at the end of April.

Meeting her Chinese counterpart on April 28, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi noted that China and Bolivia enjoy a traditional friendship featuring mutual understanding and support. 2025 will see the 40th anniversary of their establishment of diplomatic relations. China is willing to work with the Bolivian side to take this opportunity to implement the important consensus reached by the two heads of state and promote China-Bolivia strategic partnership to a new level.

The Hong Kong newspaper South China Morning Post reported the Chinese Foreign Minister as stating that: “China and Bolivia share the same goals of opposing hegemony and bullying by powerful powers and upholding fairness and justice. The two nations should jointly defend the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter and firmly safeguard the common interests of Global South countries.”

He added that both sides should continue to strengthen political mutual trust; enhance exchanges and cooperation between the governments, legislatures and political parties of the two countries; strengthen exchange of governance experience; synergise development strategies; and tap into the potential for cooperation in new areas such as digital economy, plateau agriculture, information and communication, and green development.

The Bolivian foreign ministry said Sosa would use her visit to address a broad agenda, including cooperation in tourism, technology, energy and others areas of mutual interest. Meeting her Chinese counterpart, she noted that China is an important strategic partner for Bolivia, adding that she hopes to upgrade cooperation in various fields such as economy and trade. Bolivia welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest and do business in the country.

China is currently Bolivia’s second-biggest trading partner. In 2023, trade between the two countries totalled nearly US$2.6 billion.

Sosa also met with Chen Zhou, Vice-Minister of the International Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee (IDCPC). He said that the CPC is willing to further strengthen friendly exchanges with the Movement towards Socialism (MAS) of Bolivia and promote China-Bolivia relations for sustained and stable development.  

Sosa said that Bolivia admires the great achievements of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Bolivia is currently in a critical period of development and change and is eager to strengthen cooperation with China in various fields. The Movement towards Socialism has long maintained friendly exchanges with the CPC and is willing to continue to deepen exchanges of theories and practices of state governance and administration between the two parties, so as to promote the construction of the respective parties and national development.  

Immediately prior to visiting China, Sosa visited Russia at the invitation of her counterpart Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Russia, which holds the 2024 rotating chair of the BRICS grouping, expressed its support for Bolivia’s application to join the cooperation mechanism.

The Foreign Ministers of Peru and Argentina also visited China in the last week of April.

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and on the website of the IDCPC.

Chinese FM holds talks with Bolivian counterpart

BEIJING, April 28 (Xinhua) — Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks with Bolivian Foreign Minister Celinda Sosa Lunda in Beijing on Sunday, and both sides pledged to advance bilateral cooperation and multilateral coordination.

Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, noted that China and Bolivia enjoy a traditional friendship featuring mutual understanding and support. The year 2025 marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Bolivia. China is willing to work with the Bolivian side to take this opportunity to implement the important consensus reached by the two heads of state and promote China-Bolivia strategic partnership to a new level.

Wang said that both sides should continue to strengthen political mutual trust; enhance exchanges and cooperation between the governments, legislatures and political parties of the two countries; strengthen exchange of governance experience; synergize development strategies; and tap into the potential for cooperation in new areas such as digital economy, plateau agriculture, information and communication, and green development.

China and Bolivia should enhance coordination on multilateral strategies, jointly safeguard the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and firmly safeguard the common interests of the Global South, said Wang, adding that China is willing to work together with Bolivia and other Latin American and Caribbean countries to promote the building of a China-Latin America community with a shared future.

Sosa noted that China is an important strategic partner for Bolivia, saying Bolivia hopes to upgrade cooperation with China in various fields such as economy and trade. Bolivia welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest and do business in the country.

Bolivia firmly supports the one-China principle, and the global initiatives proposed by China. Bolivia is willing to promote Latin America-China relations, Sosa said.

After their talks, the two foreign ministers witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding on cooperation between the foreign affairs academies of the two countries.


Chen Zhou Meets with Celinda Sosa Lunda, Foreign Minister of Bolivia

Beijing, April 28th (IDCPC) — Chen Zhou, Vice-minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, met here today on the afternoon with Celinda Sosa Lunda, Foreign Minister of Bolivia and her delegation.  

Chen spoke positively of the relations between the two Parties and the two countries. He said, the Chinese side is willing to work with the Bolivian side to enhance political mutual trust and strategic communication, promote practical cooperation in various fields, better benefit the two peoples, strengthen communication and coordination in international affairs, enhance solidarity and cooperation among developing countries, and jointly promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. The CPC is willing to further strengthen friendly exchanges with the Movement Towards Socialism of Bolivia and promote China-Bolivia relations for sustained and stable development.  

Sosa said, Bolivia admires the great achievements of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Bolivia is currently in a critical period of development and change, and is eager to strengthen cooperation with China in various fields. The Movement Towards Socialism has long maintained friendly exchanges with the CPC, and is willing to continue to deepen exchanges of theories and practices of state governance and administration between the two Parties, so as to promote the construction of the respective parties and national development. 

Chinese and Iranian defence ministers discuss cooperation

Following an April 26 meeting of the defence ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), held in the Kazakh capital Astana, Iran has expressed appreciation for China’s position and understanding regarding its April 13 missile and drone attack on Israeli military targets, in response to Israel’s April 1 attack on the consular section of Iran’s embassy in the Syrian capital, Damascus.

Meeting with his Chinese counterpart Dong Jun on the sidelines of the conference, Iranian Defence Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani hailed China’s stance on the ongoing developments in the region and its condemnation of Israel’s terrorist airstrike against Iran’s diplomatic premises. It is necessary, he said, for Iran and China to boost cooperation and convergence to solve security issues in the region and across the world.

Dong Jun, for his part, slammed Israel’s attack on Iran’s diplomatic premises in Syria, which he said violated international law. China supports Iran’s legitimate right to respond to Israel, he added. He invited his Iranian counterpart to take part in a security conference in Beijing and called for enhanced bilateral cooperation in the defence and military arenas. 

Besides his meeting with Ashtiani, the Xinhua News Agency reported that Dong also held bilateral meetings with his counterparts from Pakistan, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, during his stay in Kazakhstan. 

Earlier, on April 15, following the Iranian action, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi held phone talks with his Iranian and Saudi counterparts. Preserving the Saudi-Iranian rapprochement, which was brokered in Beijing last year, is a clear priority for China’s diplomacy and also serves to safeguard the peace process in Yemen, assists in ending conflict in Syria and impedes any American scheme to impose a one-sided deal with Israel that would negatively impact the struggle of the Palestinian people and that of the countries and peoples in the region against imperialism and Zionism. 

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian briefed Wang on Iran’s position on the attack on its consulate, saying that the UN Security Council did not make a necessary response and that Iran has the right to self-defence in response to the violation of its sovereignty. The Iranian side calls for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and supports China’s active efforts to push for this as well as to restore regional peace and strengthen cooperation among regional countries.

Wang Yi said China strongly condemns and firmly opposes the attack on the consular section of the Iranian embassy in Damascus, regarding it as a serious violation of international law and unacceptable.

China has noted Iran’s statement that its action taken was limited and was an act of self-defence in response to the attack. China appreciates Iran’s stress on not targeting regional and neighbouring countries as well as its reiteration on continuously pursuing a good-neighbourly and friendly policy. It is believed that Iran can handle the situation well and spare the region further turmoil while safeguarding its own sovereignty and dignity.

China is willing to maintain communication with the Iranian side and jointly push for a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian issue, Wang added. China and Iran are comprehensive strategic partners, and China is willing to steadily advance practical cooperation with Iran in various fields for a greater development of bilateral relations.

Wang Yi told his Saudi counterpart Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud that China has noticed Iran’s emphasis that its counterattack does not target any neighbouring country and that it is willing to continuously pursue a good-neighbourly policy.

This round of escalation is the latest manifestation of the spillover of the Gaza conflict, the Chinese Foreign Minister noted, adding that the top priority now is to strictly implement UN Security Council Resolution 2728, immediately realise an unconditional and lasting ceasefire, effectively protect civilians, and ensure humanitarian assistance.

The Palestinian people have long been unable to realise their legitimate national rights, which constitutes the most enduring injustice in modern times, and is the root cause of the Palestinian-Israeli issue, as well as the core of the Middle East issue.

For his part, Faisal said Saudi Arabia and China hold highly consistent positions on the current situation in the Middle East, noting that both countries stand for resolving differences through dialogue and are committed to maintaining peace and stability.

Saudi Arabia fully trusts China and is willing to push for the sustainable development of bilateral cooperation, he added.

The following articles were originally published by Press TV and the Xinhua News Agency.

Iran, China discuss military cooperation; Beijing backs Tehran’s ‘legitimate’ strikes against Israel

26 April (Press TV) — Iran and China’s defense chiefs discussed ways to enhance military cooperation, also conferring on regional issues. 

Iran’s Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani met with his Chinese counterpart Dong Jun on the sidelines of the 21st meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Defense Ministers in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Friday.

Ashtiani hailed China’s stance on the ongoing developments in the region and its condemnation of Israel’s terrorist airstrike against Iran’s diplomatic premise in the Syrian capital of Damascus earlier this month.

It is necessary for Iran and China to boost cooperation and convergence to solve security issues in the region and across the world, the Iranian defense chief said.

On April 1, the Israeli regime carried out terrorist airstrikes on the consular section of Iran’s embassy in the Syrian capital, which killed two generals of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Zahedi and General Mohammad Hadi Haji Rahimi, as well as five of their accompanying officers.

In retaliation, the IRGC targeted the occupied territories on April 13 with a barrage of drones and missiles. The retaliatory strikes, dubbed Operation True Promise, inflicted damage on Israeli military bases across the occupied Palestinian territories.

Following the reprisal, Iran warned Israel against taking any retaliatory actions and also urged the US to try not to involve itself in the conflict and signaled that it viewed the matter as “concluded.”


China supports Iran’s retaliatory airstrikes against Israel: Dong

The Chinese defense minister, for his part, slammed Israel’s attack on Iran’s diplomatic premises in Syria, which he said violated international law.

China supports Iran’s legitimate right to respond to Israel, Dong added.

He invited his Iranian counterpart to take part in a security conference in Beijing and urged for enhanced bilateral cooperation in defense and military arenas. 

The Chinese defense chief called for an immediate ceasefire in the war-stricken Gaza Strip and the delivery of humanitarian aid there.

At least 34,356 Palestinians, mostly children and women, have been killed and 77,368 people wounded in the war that Israel began on October 7 following a retaliatory operation by the Palestinian territory’s resistance movements.

The brutal military onslaught enjoys unreserved military and political support on the part of the Israeli regime’s Western allies, including the United States and France.


Chinese, Iranian FMs hold phone talks on Israel-Iran tensions

BEIJING, April 16 (Xinhua) — Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his Iranian counterpart, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, held phone talks on Monday regarding the tensions between Israel and Iran.

Amir-Abdollahian briefed Wang on Iran’s position on the attack on the consular section of the Iranian embassy in Damascus, Syria, saying that the UN Security Council did not make a necessary response to this attack, and that Iran has the right to self-defense in response to the violation of its sovereignty.

Noting that the current regional situation is very sensitive, Amir-Abdollahian said Iran is willing to exercise restraint and has no intention of further escalating the situation.

The Iranian side calls for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and supports China’s active efforts to push for a ceasefire, restore regional peace and strengthen cooperation among regional countries, Amir-Abdollahian said, adding that Iran is willing to work with China for further development of Iran-China cooperation.

Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, said China strongly condemns and firmly opposes the attack on the consular section of the Iranian embassy in Damascus, regarding it as a serious violation of international law and unacceptable.

China has noted Iran’s statement that its action taken was limited and was an act of self-defense in response to the attack against the Iranian consulate in Syria, Wang said.

China appreciates Iran’s stress on not targeting regional and neighboring countries as well as its reiteration on continuously pursuing a good-neighborly and friendly policy, he said.

It is believed that Iran can handle the situation well and spare the region further turmoil while safeguarding its own sovereignty and dignity, he added.

Wang said that the current situation is a spillover effect of the escalating conflict in Gaza. The pressing task now is to implement Security Council Resolution 2728 as soon as possible, achieve a ceasefire and end the fighting in Gaza, effectively protect civilians and prevent further aggravation of the humanitarian disaster, he said.

China is willing to maintain communication with the Iranian side and jointly push for a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian issue, Wang said.

China and Iran are comprehensive strategic partners, and China is willing to steadily advance practical cooperation with Iran in various fields for a greater development of bilateral relations, Wang said.


Chinese, Saudi FMs hold phone talks on Middle East’s regional situation, bilateral ties

BEIJING, April 16 (Xinhua) — Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his Saudi counterpart, Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, held phone talks on Monday regarding the regional situation in the Middle East as well as China-Saudi Arabia ties.

Wang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, said China firmly opposes the attack on the Iranian consulate building in Syria’s capital, Damascus, which is a serious violation of international law.

China has noticed Iran’s emphasis that its counterattack does not target any neighboring country and that it is willing to continuously pursue a good-neighborly policy, Wang added.

The current situation entails a choice between deterioration and a return to normalcy, Wang noted.

Wang said China appreciates Saudi Arabia’s emphasis on resolving issues through diplomatic means, adding that China is willing to work together with Saudi Arabia to avoid further escalation of confrontation.

This round of escalation is the latest manifestation of the spillover of the Gaza conflict, Wang noted, adding that the top priority now is to strictly implement UN Security Council Resolution 2728, immediately realize an unconditional and lasting ceasefire, effectively protect civilians, and ensure humanitarian assistance.

The Palestinian people have long been unable to realize their legitimate national rights, which constitutes the most enduring injustice in modern times, and is the root cause of the Palestinian-Israeli issue, as well as the core of the Middle East issue, Wang said.

The issue should be solved by implementing the two-state solution as soon as possible, establishing an independent Palestinian state, restoring the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people, and realizing the peaceful coexistence of Palestine and Israel, Wang said.

The international community should take more active actions to support Palestine in becoming a full member of the United Nations, promote the convening of a larger-scale, more authoritative, and more effective international peace conference, and develop a timetable and roadmap for the implementation of the two-state solution, Wang said, noting that China is willing to strengthen communication and coordination with Saudi Arabia and make joint efforts to this end.

Saudi Arabia is an important partner of China in the Middle East, said Wang, adding that China stands ready to strengthen communication and coordination with Saudi Arabia, follow through on the important consensus reached by the heads of state of the two countries, continuously deepen political mutual trust, and promote bilateral relations to higher levels.

For his part, Faisal said Saudi Arabia and China hold highly consistent positions on the current situation in the Middle East, noting that both countries stand for resolving differences through dialogue and are committed to maintaining peace and stability in the Middle East.

Faisal said that Saudi Arabia, deeply concerned about the current escalating situation in the Middle East, hopes that the situation will return to the normal track as soon as possible.

Noting that Saudi Arabia highly expects China to play an active and important role in this regard, Faisal said the Saudi side is willing to strengthen communication and coordination with China to promote an immediate and unconditional ceasefire in Gaza, start the implementation of the two-state solution, and help achieve stability in the Middle East at an early date.

Saudi Arabia fully trusts China, and is willing to push for the sustainable development of bilateral cooperation, he added.

China, Tanzania celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations

China and Tanzania have celebrated the 60th anniversary of their establishment of diplomatic relations. Tanzania has always enjoyed particularly close and friendly relations with China, which were forged by Chairman Mao Zedong, Premier Zhou Enlai and President Julius Nyerere.

Marking the 60th anniversary, on April 26, President Xi Jinping exchanged messages with his Tanzanian counterpart Samia Suluhu Hassan.

Noting that the traditional friendship between China and Tanzania was forged by the elder generations of leaders of the two countries, Xi said that in recent years, political mutual trust between the two countries has been continuously consolidated, and cooperation in various fields has yielded fruitful results, which has become a model of South-South cooperation.

For her part, Hassan said over the past 60 years since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations, the two countries have continuously deepened solidarity, friendship and sincere cooperation, adding that both sides respect each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as support each other in bilateral and multilateral affairs. Tanzania, she added, admires China’s epoch-making achievements in economic and social development.

Earlier, on April 15, the two countries held a joint celebration of the anniversary in the former Tanzanian capital of Dar es Salaam. 

Speaking there, Chinese Ambassador to Tanzania Chen Mingjian said that in the 1960s, when national liberation movements were in full swing in Africa, China stood firmly with Tanzania and other African countries and forged a profound friendship with them.

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency.

Xi exchanges congratulations with Tanzanian president over 60th anniversary of ties

BEIJING, April 26 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday exchanged congratulations with Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan over the 60th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties.

In his message, Xi pointed out that the traditional friendship between China and Tanzania was forged by the elder generations of leaders of the two countries.

Over the past 60 years since its establishment, the bilateral relationship has withstood the test of international vicissitudes and grown stronger, he added.

In recent years, political mutual trust between the two countries has been continuously consolidated, and cooperation in various fields has yielded fruitful results, which has become a model of South-South cooperation, Xi noted.

Standing at a new historical starting point, Xi said he is ready to work with Hassan to renew bilateral traditional friendship, turn the shared dream of developing and rejuvenating their two countries, as well as the magnificent chapter of bilateral Belt and Road cooperation a reality, continue to enrich the connotation of the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries, and make greater contributions to building a high-level China-Africa community with a shared future.

For her part, Hassan said over the past 60 years since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations, the two countries have continuously deepened solidarity, friendship and sincere cooperation, adding that both sides respect each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as support each other in bilateral and multilateral affairs.

Tanzania admires China’s epoch-making achievements in economic and social development, deeply appreciates China’s support in the field of development, and will unswervingly support major initiatives such as the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Development Initiative, so as to strengthen the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries, she said.


China, Tanzania celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations

DAR ES SALAAM, April 15 (Xinhua) — China and Tanzania held a reception in the Tanzanian port city of Dar es Salaam on Monday to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The celebrations, braced by Tanzanian Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation January Makamba and Chinese Ambassador to Tanzania Chen Mingjian, were also attended by overseas Chinese in Tanzania and Tanzanian government officials.

The reception was highlighted by a photo exhibition, jointly organized by the Chinese embassy and Xinhua News Agency, depicting the practical cooperation between the two countries over the past 60 years.

Makamba said the friendship between the two countries has withstood the test of time and the relationship is much stronger today.

Chen said the past 60 years have marked a period of solidarity and unity between China and Tanzania, characterized by sincere cooperation, common development and shared ideas, as well as mutual support.

She said in the 1960s, when national liberation movements were in full swing in Africa, China stood firmly with Tanzania and other African countries and forged a profound friendship with them.

On April 26, 1964, the People’s Republic of China and the United Republic of Tanzania formally established diplomatic relations. 

Vice Foreign Minister Chen Xiaodong attends South Africa’s Freedom Day reception

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Chen Xiaodong joined the South African Embassy in Beijing on April 26 to celebrate Freedom Day, the 30th anniversary of South Africa’s first democratic elections which marked a formal end to the racist apartheid regime.

Addressing the reception, Chen, who until his recent appointment as Vice Foreign Minister was serving as China’s Ambassador to South Africa, expressed congratulations on the 30th anniversary of the founding of South Africa and spoke highly of South Africa’s development achievements and contribution to world prosperity and stability. The Chinese side stands ready to work together with the South African side to jointly create a better future for China-South Africa and China-Africa relations, he said.

South African Ambassador to China Siyabonga Cyprian Cwele thanked the Communist Party of China and the Chinese people for their important contributions to bilateral relations and highly appreciated President Xi Jinping’s successful visit to South Africa again in August last year.

The following article was originally published on the website of the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

On April 26, 2024, Vice Foreign Minister Chen Xiaodong, upon invitation, attended and addressed the Freedom Day reception hosted by the Embassy of South Africa in China.

Chen Xiaodong expressed congratulations on the 30th anniversary of the founding of South Africa and spoke highly of South Africa’s development achievements and contribution to world prosperity and stability. He said that in recent years, under the strategic guidance of President Xi Jinping and President Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa, bilateral relations have achieved leapfrog development, starting a new era of building a high-level China-South Africa community with a shared future. In September this year, the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation will be held in Beijing. The Chinese side stands ready to work together with the South African side to jointly create a better future for China-South Africa and China-Africa relations.

South African Ambassador to China Siyabonga Cyprian Cwele thanked the Communist Party of China and the Chinese people for their important contributions to bilateral relations and highly appreciated President Xi Jinping’s successful visit to South Africa again in August last year. He said that South Africa-China cooperation in various fields has great potential and that the South African side stands ready to work with the Chinese side to strengthen political, economic, people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two countries and achieve greater development of the South Africa-China comprehensive strategic partnership.

69 years on, the Bandung Spirit remains alive in the Global South

The following article, originally published in Xinhua on 21 April 2024 to coincide with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s visit to Indonesia, explores the fascinating history of the historic Asian-African Conference, held in Bandung in 1955, and the significance of the Bandung Spirit for the world today.

The Bandung Conference marked “the first time that the countries of the Global South united to oppose imperialism and colonialism in defense of their sovereign rights and a more equitable world.” The significance of this united front against imperialism resonated across the world, including with the great African-American freedom fighter Malcolm X, who said in his Message to the Grassroots that the attendees of the conference “began to recognise who their enemy was” and formed a common front against colonialism and imperialism on this basis.

At Bandung all the nations came together. Their were dark nations from Africa and Asia. Some of them were Buddhists. Some of them were Muslim. Some of them were Christians. Some of them were Confucianists; some were atheists. Despite their religious differences, they came together. Some were communists; some were socialists; some were capitalists. Despite their economic and political differences, they came together.

Opening the conference, Indonesian President Sukarno stated:

Wherever, whenever and however it appears, colonialism is an evil thing, and it must be eradicated from the earth. I hope our conference will give evidence of the fact that we Asian and African leaders understand that Asia and Africa can prosper only when they are united, and that even the safety of the world at large cannot be safeguarded without a united Asia-Africa.

The article notes that Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai played a key role in the conference, proposing the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, which became “a crucial component of the Bandung Spirit and were later accepted by the vast majority of countries worldwide as the basic norms of international relations and the basic principles of international law.”

The Bandung Spirit remains as relevant as ever, in a world where the imperialist powers are still seeking to preserve their hegemony and suppress the development of the Global South. The article cites a 2015 speech by President Xi Jinping, Carry Forward the Bandung Spirit for Win-win Cooperation as follows:

We must carry forward the Bandung Spirit by enriching it with new elements consistent with changing times, by pushing for a new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation, by promoting a more just and equitable international order and system.

The Bandung Spirit continues to inform China’s foreign policy and its approach to the united front against imperialism and for development. The article concludes:

Today, almost seven decades after the conference, the Bandung Spirit carries on, inspiring countries in the Global South to embark on a new path of common development through win-win cooperation under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative and other platforms.

“Few cities in history have won so many hearts and minds as Bandung,” the late Honorary President of the People’s Republic of China, Soong Ching Ling, commented on the Indonesian city.

The historic Asian-African Conference, also known as the Bandung Conference, was held in the city on April 18, 1955. It marked the first time that the countries of the Global South united to oppose imperialism and colonialism in defense of their sovereign rights and a more equitable world.

Continue reading 69 years on, the Bandung Spirit remains alive in the Global South

Year of DPRK-China Friendship strengthens mutual support and cooperation for the socialist cause

The Friendship Year, marking the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), was formally inaugurated with an April 11-13 visit to the Korean capital Pyongyang by a Chinese party and government delegation led by Zhao Leji, Member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC). 

Zhao Leji met with DPRK top leader Kim Jong Un, General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) and President of the State Affairs of the DPRK, towards the end of his visit.

Zhao extended to Kim the kind regards and good wishes of General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee Xi Jinping.

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the DPRK, and the journey of the past 75 years epitomised good neighbourliness and friendship as the two countries stood side by side, fighting together and sharing a common destiny and common development, he said.

Zhao pointed out that the China-DPRK friendship, established and cultivated meticulously by the elder generations of revolutionists of both parties and both countries, has withstood various tests of the changing international situation and is an invaluable asset of the two countries.

The CPC and the Chinese government have always treated the China-DPRK relations from a strategic height and long-term perspective, and it is China’s unwavering policy to maintain, consolidate and develop the China-DPRK traditional friendly and cooperative relations.

Kim Jong Un extended his warm congratulations over the development achievements that China has made in the pursuit of its socialist cause under the strong leadership of General Secretary Xi and the CPC. He stressed that the DPRK-China relations have boasted a profound historical tradition, having withstood various tests and been passed on from generation to generation.

It is the unwavering policy of the WPK and the DPRK government to consolidate and develop the traditional friendly and cooperative relations between the two countries. The relationship is continuously developing to new and higher stages in line with the demands of the new era.

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) added that Kim Jong Un affirmed that it is his consistent stand and the invariable and steadfast policy of the WPK and the government of the DPRK to develop the long-standing DPRK-China friendship decade after decade and century after century, expressing his expectation that the common will of the two parties and the two countries to dynamically promote the socialist cause and provide their peoples with substantial well-being by steadily carrying forward and developing these durable traditions of friendship would lead to responsible progress and successful fruition of the Year of DPRK-China Friendship.

Offering sincere congratulations to the Chinese party, government and people for registering remarkable successes in the struggle for implementing the tasks set forth at the 20th National Congress of the CPC, he expressed his hope that the fraternal Chinese people would make a more brilliant step forward in carrying out the historic task of building a modern and powerful socialist country this year marking the 75th founding anniversary of the PRC under the guidance of General Secretary Xi Jinping.

Following the talks, at a luncheon he hosted, Kim Jong Un proposed a toast to the eternal development of socialism in the two countries, longevity, and good health of General Secretary Xi Jinping and to the successful DPRK visit of the party and government delegation of the PRC led by Zhao Leji.

On April 11, in talks with his DPRK counterpart Choe Ryong Hae, Member of the Presidium of the Political Bureau of the WPK Central Committee and Chairman of the Standing Committee of the DPRK’s Supreme People’s Assembly, Zhao said that the China-DPRK traditional friendship was established and cultivated meticulously by the elder generations of leaders of both parties and both countries.

General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee Xi Jinping has repeatedly said that the CPC and the Chinese government attach great importance to the traditional friendly and cooperative relations between the two countries, and that it is China’s unwavering strategy to maintain, consolidate and develop bilateral relations.

China is ready to work with the DPRK to implement the important consensus reached by the top leaders of both parties and both countries and take the “China-DPRK Friendship Year” as an opportunity to intensify high-level exchanges, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation, promote people-to-people exchanges and strengthen strategic coordination, so as to further promote and advance China-DPRK relations to continue to move forward.

Choe said the blood-cemented friendship between the two countries has a long history and profound foundation and is the common precious heritage and wealth of the two countries.

The opening ceremony for the China-DPRK Friendship Year was held on April 12. In his speech, Zhao Leji said that it has always been the steadfast strategic policy of the CPC and the Chinese government to safeguard, solidify and develop China-DPRK traditional friendly cooperation. 

Continue reading Year of DPRK-China Friendship strengthens mutual support and cooperation for the socialist cause

Serbian President completely rejects suggestions of Chinese ‘debt trap diplomacy’

In this episode of the CGTN series Leaders Talk, Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić speaks to Wang Guan about the special friendship that links the two countries. Chinese people often refer to Serbia as their “iron clad brother”.

Vučić recalls that China has been the most supportive country to Serbia in difficult times, mentioning, in particular, the fight against Covid-19. Other countries talked about solidarity yet hoarded vaccines, incubators, and other medical equipment. But China came to the aid of Serbia and of countries around the world. In 2020, President Vučić touched the hearts of many people in China when he went to the airport to personally receive the medical relief supplies from China and kissed first the Serbian and then the Chinese flag.

He also recalled how his intercession with President Xi Jinping during the Chinese leader’s state visit in 2016 had saved the country’s Smederevo steel mill and also spoke about the 2022 inauguration of the Belgrade to Novi Sad (Serbia’s second largest city) link of the Serbia-Hungary high-speed railway.

Vučić completely rejects suggestions of Chinese ‘debt trap diplomacy’. He was presented with such allegations in Brussels but countered that Serbia had taken many loans from China, but the country’s public debt to GDP ratio was some 51-52% whereas the average in the Eurozone is 92% and, in some cases, it is over 100%.

Additionally, the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that Serbia signed with China last October will bring many benefits to his country, both in facilitating exports and making imports cheaper.

Recalling the NATO bombing of the then Yugoslavia 25 years ago, which also claimed the lives of Chinese citizens, the Serbian President notes that NATO’s actions were illegal and criminal – there was no resolution or authorisation from the United Nations Security Council. Territorial integrity is important to both China and Serbia and his position on Taiwan is very straightforward: Taiwan is China. It is up to China when and how it achieves reunification. Whatever China does in this regard will be supported by Serbia.

Reflecting on President Xi Jinping, Vučić says that you can see the depth of his thoughts, and his love for his country, from the simple but profound way in which he deploys Chinese proverbs in his writings.

The full video of President Vučić’s interview is embedded below.

Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki meets with Ambassador Xue Bing

Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki met with Ambassador Xue Bing, Special Envoy of the People’s Republic of China to the Horn of Africa, in the Eritrean capital Asmara on April 7. Their discussion centred on the progress in Eritrea-China strategic ties, as well as regional and international issues of mutual concern.

President Isaias announced Eritrea’s participation in the forthcoming Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit, to be held in Beijing this September. He also condemned the acts of indiscriminate killing and devastation perpetrated by Israel in Gaza.

Ambassador Xue Bing, who previously visited Eritrea in December 2023, expressed China’s appreciation for Eritrea’s independence and its principled, non-aligned foreign policy. He emphasised Eritrea’s vital role in promoting peace and stability in the Horn of Africa region and expressed his expectation for the two countries to strengthen their historical and strategic ties and to collaborate against hegemony and domination.

The friendly relations between China and Eritrea have a long history, dating back to the Eritrean people’s protracted war for independence. These relations were in turn significantly boosted by President Isaias’s state visit to China in May last year.

The following article was originally published by Shabait, the official website of Eritrea’s Ministry of Information.

President Isaias Afwerki met with Ambassador Xue Bing, Special Envoy of the People’s Republic of China to the Horn of Africa, at the Denden Guest House this morning. The discussion centered on the progress in Eritrea-China strategic ties, as well as regional and international issues of mutual importance.

Regarding peace and stability, President Isaias emphasized the importance of bilateral and regional forums and mechanisms in achieving tangible results. He highlighted the dividends accruing to both sides and confirmed Eritrea’s readiness for expanded cooperation. Additionally, he announced Eritrea’s participation in the forthcoming Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit in Beijing in September.

President Isaias underscored the significance of regional peace, particularly in the Horn of Africa, Red Sea, Nile Basin, and Arabian Gulf. He condemned acts of indiscriminate killings and devastation perpetrated by Israel in Gaza.

Ambassador Xue Bing expressed China’s appreciation for Eritrea’s independence and its principled, non-aligned foreign policy. He emphasized Eritrea’s vital role in promoting peace and stability in the Horn of Africa region.

Ambassador Xue Bing, who previously visited Eritrea in December 2023, expressed his expectation for the two countries to strengthen their historical and strategic ties and collaborate against hegemony and domination mentalities.

CPC and Workers’ Party of Brazil hold theory seminar in Beijing

A significant step was taken in consolidating the institutionalised and maturing relationship between China and the Latin American left, with the holding in Beijing of the seventh theory seminar between the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the Workers’ Party of Brazil (PT) on April 9.

Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee and Chinese President, and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Honorary President of the PT and Brazilian President, sent congratulatory letters to the seminar.

Xi noted that after the PT returned to power in January 2023, it had vigorously promoted development strategies and stayed committed to achieving sustainable and comprehensive development of Brazil.

He said the seminar focused on strengthening the ruling party building and exploring the path to modernisation, which is timely and of great significance to strengthening the capacity building of the ruling parties of the two countries and exploring the modernisation paths suited for their own national conditions.

Xi also noted that this year marks the 50th anniversary of the China-Brazil diplomatic ties and the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the CPC-PT relations. The CPC is willing to deepen exchanges and mutual learning with the PT on governance, and promote party building and national development, so as to make greater contributions to the continuous development of China-Brazil relations in the new era and the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.

Lula said in his letter that last year, he and General Secretary Xi had worked together to take the two countries’ comprehensive strategic partnership to a new level. Brazil-China relations are important not only to the two countries but also to the whole world, he added, noting that the two sides will work together to consolidate traditional mechanisms of global governance such as the United Nations, while strengthening key mechanisms of South-South cooperation such as the Group of 77 and China, BRICS, the China-CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) Forum and the BASIC countries (grouping Brazil, South Africa, India and China). He further noted that the relationship between the PT and the CPC is an important part of the relationship between the two countries and expressed confidence that the exchanges between the two parties, the two governments and the two peoples will be closer and more fruitful.

Themed on “strengthening the building of the ruling party and exploring the road to modernisation”, the seminar involved in-depth discussions on strengthening experience exchanges in party building and state governance, and promoting the development of China-Brazil relations.    

Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC), said that cooperation between China and Brazil, the largest developing countries and representatives of emerging market economies in the eastern and western hemispheres, is not only crucial to boosting the development of the two countries, but also has strategic significance and global influence that transcends the bilateral scope. Both China and Brazil have independent political backgrounds, shoulder the historical mission of development and revitalisation, and adhere to the positions of fairness and justice.

Currently, the CPC is uniting and leading the Chinese people of all ethnic groups to advance the noble cause of building a great country and national rejuvenation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernisation. And the PT is vigorously promoting Brazil’s re-industrialisation plan and New Growth Acceleration Program. The development strategies of both sides are highly consistent. He said that the CPC looks forward to seeing the two countries join hands on the road to modernisation, safeguarding the common interests of both countries and the vast number of developing countries, injecting positive energy into world peace and development, and jointly promoting the building of a community with a shared future for humanity. He called for making good use of multilateral platforms such as the BRICS political parties dialogue and the São Paulo Forum so as to raise strong voices in favour of making the international order more just and reasonable. (The São Paulo Forum is an important regional body that unites nearly all significant political forces of the left in south and Central America and the Caribbean.)

Gleisi Hoffmann, President of the PT, said that since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Brazil and China, great changes have taken place in both countries and the world. It is of great significance for the PT and the CPC to conduct exchanges and discussions on bilateral and major international issues. The world today is experiencing a multi-dimensional systemic crisis that affects every country and region in the world in different ways. Under the new circumstances, the PT is willing to, together with the CPC, strengthen exchanges and experiences of party building and state governance, strengthen unity and coordination, work together to respond to global challenges, and safeguard international fairness and justice.    

The following day, the PT delegation met with Li Xi, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. Li said that China is willing to work with Brazil to promote friendly exchanges in various fields and at all levels, enhance political mutual trust, deepen strategic cooperation, and promote the upgrading of the China-Brazil comprehensive strategic partnership.

The following articles were originally published by the Xinhua News Agency and the IDCPC.

Xi, Lula send congratulatory letters to seminar involving CPC, Workers’ Party of Brazil

BEIJING, April 9 (Xinhua) — Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Chinese president, and Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, honorary president of the Workers’ Party of Brazil (PT) and Brazilian president, have sent congratulatory letters separately to the 7th theory seminar of the CPC and the PT held in Beijing on Tuesday.

Continue reading CPC and Workers’ Party of Brazil hold theory seminar in Beijing

Angolan President: We know what colonisation is and the Chinese are not colonising Africa but cooperating with us

Angolan President João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço paid a state visit to China from March 14-17 at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping. 

Whilst in China he gave an exclusive interview to He Yanke for the CGTN series Leaders Talk. 

He Yanke noted that Lourenço has visited China on numerous occasions since 2000, including as the Secretary General of the ruling Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), as the Special Envoy of his predecessor, and this is his third visit as head of state. 

Summing up his impressions from all these visits, Lourenço remarked that what impressed him most was that China was continually making progress and bringing surprises to the world. 

Noting that last year saw the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Angola, he described the relationship as exemplary. During very difficult times for his country, for example the period of post-war reconstruction, China had lent a helping hand. And the same was true, not only for his country but for the world, when humanity was suddenly faced with the Covid pandemic. 

Asked for his views on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he recalled that China has provided Angola with strong financial support for infrastructure construction, including for roads, ports, airports, and hydropower plants, all of which are necessary for development. In his last few days in China, he had talked with 24 major companies, who had shown willingness to take risks and invest in his country.

Noting that China was building what will be Africa’s largest hydropower plant in Angola, and also training local personnel for the project, that will not only meet his country’s needs but also produce surplus electricity to be supplied to neighbouring southern African countries, Lourenço  was asked, given that Chinese companies are providing tens of thousands of jobs in Angola, how he would respond to the accusations levelled against China’s role in Africa from some quarters.

His answer was emphatic. Not just the Portuguese colonialists, he said, but the Europeans in general, including the British and French, had been in Africa for centuries. They had never engaged in the kind of infrastructure construction that we are seeing now. They are not just critics but slanderers acting out of malice. The facts are clear: China has not invaded any African country. The Chinese in Africa are not there for colonisation. We know what colonisation is and the Chinese are not colonising Africa but cooperating with us. China did not come to us fully armed but with funds and technology and a willingness to work with us.

The results are plain to see. In 2002 (when Angola’s long-running civil war finally ended), our country was in ruins. Thanks to the help from China, we now have land-based infrastructure connecting provinces and cities which didn’t exist before. 

The construction of roads, bridges, ports and railways was all done with the help of China. If these critics want to be part of the process, then they must act and do better than China. But we don’t believe they can.

Asked about President Xi Jinping’s three global initiatives, on development, security and civilisation, President Lourenço described the Chinese leader as a visionary and insightful statesman. Without peace and security, there can be no development – this is true both from the Angolan experience and also on a world scale.

The full interview with President Lourenço is embedded below.