5. What has China done to promote peace and security in the Middle East and facilitate negotiations on regional crises such as Yemen and Libya?
Wang Yi: Peace and security of the Middle East bear on the fundamental interests of countries in the region, and concern global stability and development. Lasting peace in the world would not be possible without a stable Middle East. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, China has been closely following the peace and security situation in the Middle East. It has held an objective and just position and actively called for working toward a vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security in the Middle East. Working closely with regional countries, China has made its due contribution to regional peace and stability.
China has approached hotspot issues in a Chinese way and actively facilitated peace and dialogue among parties, playing a positive and constructive role for the political settlement of regional issues. On Palestine, China has been a staunch supporter of the cause of the Palestinian people. The four-point proposal on the Palestine issue put forth by President Xi Jinping in 2017 was warmly received in the region. At last year's eighth Ministerial Conference of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, President Xi explicitly reaffirmed China's support for the just cause of Palestine and called for efforts to renew the Palestine-Israel peace talks on the basis of the two-state solution and the Arab Peace Initiative. On South Sudan, China has consistently supported the peace process in the country and made it a priority to help South Sudan restore stability and development. On Libya, Yemen and other issues, China has been working alongside the international community to be a positive force for the early and peaceful settlement of these issues.
China has dispatched a total of 27,023 personnel to peacekeeping missions in Lebanon, South Sudan, the Darfur region of Sudan and Western Sahara. They have contributed remarkably to restoring peace and stability in those countries and regions and protecting the life and property of the local people. Thirteen Chinese soldiers have made the ultimate sacrifice for peace in the Middle East. China has also provided mine sweeping and other assistance to countries like Kuwait, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen and Somalia, as part of the successful security cooperation between China and regional countries.
The Chinese navy fleets conducting escort missions in the Gulf of Aden have escorted more than 6,600 vessels passing through the Gulf of Aden and waters off the coast of Somalia, and rescued, protected and aided more than 70 vessels in danger. Their service has been highly commended by the international community.
China has also provided strong humanitarian support to refugees in relevant countries to rekindle their hope for rebuilding their home in peace even in time of conflicts. At the opening ceremony of the eighth Ministerial Conference of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, President Xi announced that China will provide an additional 700 million yuan of assistance to Palestine, Syria, Yemen, Jordan and Lebanon, discuss with Arab countries the implementation of programs totaling one billion yuan on maintaining stability, and launch a special program for economic reconstruction through industrial revitalization with a US$20 billion credit line for closer cooperation with countries having reconstruction needs. These concrete measures have been applauded by the people of regional countries.
All in all, when it comes to safeguarding peace and security in the Middle East, China has always been a force for justice and peace. As the Middle East continues to see complex changes with rising security challenges, China will step up communication and coordination with Saudi Arabia and other regional countries and together strive for lasting peace, security, prosperity and development in the region.
6. How do you see the situation in Syria? What do you think are the factors that complicate the situation? Is it possible to achieve a political settlement?
Wang Yi: Recent months have seen some major developments in Syria. Counter-terrorism efforts have yielded important results, security is improving significantly, and the humanitarian situation is getting better. There has been a buildup of momentum for a political settlement. Under the good offices of the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for Syria, major progress has been made in establishing a Constitutional Committee. The consensus that has been reached so far among the various parties on the composition of the Committee has laid the foundation for further efforts to move the political process forward.
An early and proper settlement of the Syrian issue is crucial for Syria's stability, development and the well-being of its people. It also bears on peace, stability and long-term security of the region. China has always maintained that political settlement is the only way out for Syria, that the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Syria must be upheld and respected, and that the future of Syria should be decided by its people acting in their own will.
We have noticed that in our pursuit of a solution to the Syrian issue, whenever the above-mentioned principles are followed in good faith, there would be smooth progress; otherwise, there would only be setbacks or even reversals. China supports the UN's role as the main channel of mediation. We have proposed China's solutions to the issue and sent our special envoy on missions of shuttling diplomacy to promote talks for peace. We call upon all parties in Syria to engage in inclusive political dialogue, advance the political process as soon as possible, and look for a solution that fits Syria's realities and reflects the concerns of all parties in a balanced way. Members of the international community, on their part, should seize the opportunities and make concerted efforts to create a favorable external environment for settling the Syrian issue.
China will work with the rest of the international community and continue to play a positive and constructive role in seeking an early and proper settlement of the Syrian issue.
7. China has scored remarkable achievements over the past 70 years since the founding of the People's Republic. In what way is China's success story relevant to other developing countries? What is its significance in the global context?
Wang Yi: China's most successful experience over the last 70 years is that it has embarked on a development path which suits China's realities and has the support of all its people, namely the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics. This path of development has been shaped by 90 years of struggle by the Chinese people in pursuing the great social revolution under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, by 70 years of tireless exploration since the founding of New China, and by 40 years of reform and opening-up.
China's development has shown that, like "all roads lead to Rome", there is more than one pathway leading to modernization and there is simply no such thing as a one-size-fits-all development model. The only way to find the right path of development is to open one's mind, be down-to-earth, proceed from national conditions and the aspirations of the people, and be responsive to the needs of one's country in the context of changing times. The success of China's development has broadened the avenues for other developing countries to achieve modernization, and provided experience to draw from for countries who are exploring their own development paths.
The development and rejuvenation of China, a big country with 1.4 billion population, represents a major contribution to the development of humanity. As a responsible major country, China never exports its social system to others. It firmly supports other countries including Saudi Arabia in choosing their own development paths, and stands ready to exchange governance experience with them and contribute China's insights and proposals for addressing challenges facing mankind.