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Essence of major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics

By Ji Si, March 10, 2020

Against the wider backdrop of unprecedented global change, these are China's promises to the international community, providing the world with an important angle in which to understand its foreign policies, and following which it can establish a new type of international relations: major country diplomacy with Chinese characteristics in the new era. 

To walk the path of a peaceful development is a strategic decision born out of China's historical culture and experience. It also marks the inheritance and development of Chinese cultural traditions. Over the previous 5,000 years of continuous civilization, the Chinese people have long advocated that "the strong should not bully the weak, the rich should not insult the poor." It is their dream to achieve inclusive development and to realize universal peace in the world.

To walk the path of peaceful development is a tenet the Chinese people have learned after experiencing tremendous hardships in recent history. Rising from humiliation, poverty, and realizing a great leap forward to become rich and prosperous, the Chinese people understand that today's peace was hard earned. Chinese people are determined to realize national development and rejuvenation through peaceful means. 

International stability is important to China. A generally peaceful and stable external environment has enabled China to quickly integrate into the process of economic globalization. It allowed the country to unify its domestic development while opening-up to the outside world. Therefore, to maintain world peace, and promote common development, reflects not only the original intentions and missions of the CPC, but also the fundamental requirements of walking the path of peaceful development. President Xi Jinping has emphasized repeatedly: "If the world is good, then China is good; if China is good, then the world is good."

However, the international system is going through profound changes. Interconnection and mutual reliance between countries continues to deepen, while global instabilities and uncertainty grows more prominent, and the common challenges humanity face become more pressing.

Faced with such circumstances, conflict and confrontation cannot be the right solution, while self-enclosure is not an adequate tactic for self-protection. Peace and common development can be the only way forward. As such, China insists on shouldering more international responsibilities under a multilateral framework. This is evidenced by China's call for building a community with a shared future for mankind, and the joint construction of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. These projects will allow China’s domestic development to benefit the world and inject new impetus into international economic development. 

The rationality China has demonstrated in managing its divergences with the United States, and the sincerity it has shown to promote cooperation from the onset of Sino-US trade frictions to the signing of a phase one deal between them, have fully demonstrated its commitment to maintaining world peace and promoting common development.

China's pursuit of peace and development is by no means for the sake of peace and development only, and it has its own principles and baseline. The CPC and the Chinese people have been tested by blood and fire, and know that peace can only be strived for through fight, not compromise. Thus, nobody should count on China yielding to external pressures, or making concessions on core interest issues, compromising its sovereignty, security and development interests. 

China firmly opposes any words and deeds that aim to split China, weaken the CPC's ruling status, or change its socialism with Chinese characteristics. Currently, some external powers are colluding with secessionists in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang in an attempt to block the great national rejuvenation of China. The CPC and the Chinese people will inevitably fight against these forces so as to effectively defend the country's core interests.

To safeguard national sovereignty, security and development interests, which concerns a country's life or death, is not only an inviolable primary right of a country, but also the last guarantee to maintain world peace and development. Only through mutual respect of each other's interests, seeking cooperation and win-win results can the efforts to safeguard world peace, and promote common development become mainstream endeavors in the world. China will adhere to this concept, unswervingly walk the path of peaceful development, and encourage more countries to take this path. 

In conclusion, China's unswerving adherence to the path of peaceful development, to world peace, and to common development are core tenets of the concept of the community with a shared future for mankind that it has proposed. This reflects China's resolve to work together with other countries to establish a new type of international relations, and is key to gaining a deep understanding of Xi Jinping Thought on Foreign Affairs. 

Ji Si is a researcher with the International Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee

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