FM’s presser highlights China’s role as responsible global force

Zhao YushaChen Qingqing, Global Times, March 7, 2024 —

US should view China’s devt objectively, honor its commitments: Wang Yi

In a press conference on Thursday that lasted about one and a half hours, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi answered 21 questions, covering a wide range of issues related to China’s foreign policy and foreign relations, which according to Chinese experts has increasingly shown the maturity of China’s major-power diplomacy and Chinese wisdom.

The foreign minister’s remarks have not only demonstrated responsibility, consistency and the forward-looking nature of Chinese diplomacy, it also helped most countries see clearer China’s role as defender of global peace and development, said experts. Moreover, it also showed that decoupling from and cracking down on China will not only harm bilateral ties, but also exacerbate an already turbulent global atmosphere.

Observers said Thursday’s press conference indicated that China’s diplomacy will follow the trajectory of 2023, seeking stability and contributing to preventing the world from descending into deeper chaos. Such a task is not easy given the current international landscape, thus more cooperation will be needed, said experts.

Major powers relations

On China-US relations, Wang said that since the meeting between the leaders of the two countries in San Francisco in November 2023, there has indeed been some improvements in China-US relations, which fully aligns with the wishes and interests of the peoples of both countries and the world, Wang said.

However, it must be pointed out that the US side’s incorrect perceptions of China continue, and the commitments made by the US have not been truly fulfilled. The US is constantly thinking of new ways to suppress China, and the list of unilateral sanctions is continuously expanding, reaching an unimaginable level of scapegoating, according to Wang.

We urge the US to be clear-eyed about the trend of the times, view China’s development objectively and rationally, engage in exchanges with China proactively and pragmatically, and act to fulfill its commitments, Wang said.

The Chinese senior diplomat highlighted the immense disasters brought to both the US itself and the world due to deteriorating China-US relations caused by incorrect US policies. Wang’s remarks once again emphasized that China attaches great importance to China-US relations, expressing China’s goodwill to develop, cooperate, stabilize, and achieve win-win outcomes, Li Haidong, a professor at the China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times on Thursday.

“Many of the disputes in existing international affairs are related to the US’ incorrect foreign perceptions,” the expert said.

Diao Daming, a professor at the Renmin University of China in Beijing, told the Global Times that the US side should maintain a positive momentum and avoid actions that are detrimental to this dynamic stability,” Diao said, stressing that a stable China-US relationship also sends out a positive signal to the world.

Foreign minister also elaborated on China’s relationship with Russia and Europe. Wang said that China and Russia have forged a new paradigm of major-country relations that differs entirely from the obsolete Cold War approach, noting that China is willing to work with Russia to further cultivate new momentum for cooperation and continuously strengthen the friendly foundation between the two peoples.

On China’s relationship with Europe, Wang said Europe’s labeling of China as a partner, competitor and systemic rival at the same time is like reaching a traffic light and finding the red, yellow and green lights all on at the same time. “How can one drive on?”

As long as China and Europe engage in mutually beneficial cooperation, no attempt to create bloc confrontation will succeed, and as long as China and Europe stay committed to openness and mutual benefit, deglobalization will not prevail, said the Chinese Foreign Minister.

Wang’s comments on China-Russia relations came in response to the West’s malicious hyping of the two countries’ cooperation, telling them that China’s collaboration with Russia is not targeted at, nor will it be swayed by influence or pressure from a third country, Cui Hongjian, a professor with the Academy of Regional and Global Governance with Beijing Foreign Studies University, told the Global Times.

“The traffic light analogy illustrates the underlying issues plaguing Europe’s foreign policy, highlighting internal contradictions and conflicting interests that hinder a cohesive approach. This metaphor underscores the challenges faced by European countries, while their own political correctness contradicts their practical interests,” Yang Xiyu, a senior research fellow at the China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times.

Ties with Europe still are a prioritized direction for China’s diplomacy this year. It is hoped that Europe can seize the opportunity to form an objective and rational attitude toward cooperation with China in order to withstand growing uncertainties, said experts.

Ameen Muneer Mohammed, a reporter with Dubai-based China Arab TV, is interviewed by journalists after a press conference about China's foreign policy and foreign relations held on the sidelines of the second session of the 14th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing on March 7, 2024. Photo: VCG

Ameen Muneer Mohammed, a reporter with Dubai-based China Arab TV, is interviewed by journalists after a press conference about China’s foreign policy and foreign relations held on the sidelines of the second session of the 14th National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing on March 7, 2024. Photo: VCG

Responsible role highlighted 

At the press conference, Wang stressed China’s role in mediating the current crises threatening the world’s stability and peace.

China supports the holding of an international peace conference that is recognized by both Russia and Ukraine and that ensures the equal participation of all parties and fair discussions on all peace plans, said Wang.

On Palestinian-Israeli conflict, he said that a two-state solution is the only way to break the vicious cycle, and that the failure to end the humanitarian disaster caused by the conflict today in the 21st century is a tragedy for humanity and a disgrace for civilization.

The Chinese foreign minister also explained in detail China’s contribution and role in pushing forward the development of the Global South. Wang noted that the Global South is no longer the “silent majority,” but a key force for reforming the international order and a source of profound hope as the world undergoes changes unseen in the last century.

China was, is and will be a steadfast member of the Global South. We go through thick and thin and head toward a shared future together with countries of the Global South, and we will always be a crucial force for the development and prosperity of the Global South, said Wang.

The foreign minister’s press conference highlighted features of Chinese diplomacy, which is marked by self-confidence, autonomy, and a strategic focus, said Cui, noting that such qualities are not easy to maintain against the backdrop of a complex international landscape, Cui noted.

Yang said that China’s diplomacy today is not only focused on its own interests, but also accurately captures a common need among many countries in the world, which is to seek stability and cooperation.

He believed that in 2024, Chinese diplomacy will continue along the trajectory set in 2023, aiming to prevent further political and economic turmoil in the world. It is recognized that China alone cannot accomplish the task of stabilizing global politics and promoting economic development, so cooperation must be emphasized.

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