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May 25 | Issue 2020-32
Special: Press Conference on China's Foreign Policy

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met the press on the sidelines of the third session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC) Sunday afternoon. He took questions regarding China's foreign policy and diplomatic relations via video link. Here are some key points.

Read transcript or watch video.
On the COVID-19 pandemic
The most important thing we could learn from COVID-19 is that the life and health of people in different countries have never been so closely connected . Also, it has never been made so clear to us that all nations live in the same global village and that humanity is in fact a community with a shared future.
The virus respects no borders or races. It poses a challenge to all human beings without distinction. Political manipulation will give the virus loopholes to exploit; a beggar-thy-neighbor approach will leave each of us more vulnerable; rejection of science will allow the virus to wreak greater havoc.
No country, no matter how strong it is, can insulate itself from a global challenge. Watching from an apparently safe distance and sitting idle will eventually backfire. Pointing fingers at others will only end up damaging one’s own reputation. Self-conceit and blame-shifting will not help one solve its own problems.
On the origin of virus

China is open to joint efforts by the international science community to identify the source of the virus. Importantly, it must be a professional, impartial and constructive process.

The process of identifying the source of the virus must be free from political interference, respect the sovereign equality of nations, and avoid a presumption of guilt. All countries closely related to the virus should be covered by field missions. The whole process should be open, transparent, objective and rational.
The global narrative about COVID-19 should reflect reason and conscience. Humanity has an obligation to leave behind an objective and truthful account as part of its collective memory.
Lawsuits related to COVID-19 doom to fail

The attempt to file frivolous lawsuits is a shoddy one, as it has zero basis in fact, law or international precedence. Some people are clamoring for so-called “accountability and compensation” from a victim of COVID-19 and fabricating so-called “evidence” for frivolous lawsuits. These people are trampling on international rule of law and betraying human conscience. Their action does not square with facts, stand up to reason or have any legal foundation.
On China-US relations
It is most regrettable that while the coronavirus is still out there, a “political virus” is also spreading in the US and jumping at any opportunity to attack and slander China.

Some politicians ignore the basic facts and make up countless lies and conspiracy theories concerning China. The longer the list, the more it says about how low the rumor-mongers are willing to go and the more stains they will leave in history.
Both China and the US stand to gain from cooperation and lose from confrontation : this best captures what we have learned, positive and otherwise, from the past decades. Both sides should take this lesson to heart.

China and the US have different social systems, but this is the result of the different choices made by our people, which we must respect. It’s also true that we have many disagreements, but that doesn’t preclude cooperation.
China has no intention to change, still less replace, the US. It’s time for the US to give up its wishful thinking of changing China or stopping the 1.4 billion Chinese people’s historical march toward modernization.

Some political forces in the US are taking China-US relations hostage and pushing our two countries to the brink of a “new Cold War” . This is a dangerous attempt to turn back the wheel of history.
China will defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity , its legitimate right to development, and its dignity and place in the world which the Chinese people have worked so hard to earn.
China and the US should and must find a way of peaceful co-existence and mutually beneficial cooperation , demonstrating that this is possible between two countries with different systems and cultures.
On national security legislation for Hong Kong SAR
Hong Kong affairs are China’s internal affairs and allow no external interference. Non-interference, as a basic norm of international relations, must be observed by all countries.

The central government holds the primary and ultimate responsibility for national security in all sub-national administrative regions. This is the basic theory and principle underpinning national sovereignty and a common practice in countries around the globe.

Excessive unlawful foreign meddling in Hong Kong affairs has placed China’s national security in serious jeopardy . Under such circumstances, establishing a legal system and enforcement mechanisms for safeguarding national security in the Hong Kong SAR has become a pressing priority. We must get it done without the slightest delay.
The NPC decision is targeted at a narrow category of acts that seriously jeopardize national security, and does not affect the high degree of autonomy in Hong Kong. It does not affect the rights and freedoms enjoyed by Hong Kong residents. And it does not affect the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors in Hong Kong.

The adoption of the decision will start a legislative procedure. It will protect the basic principle of “one country, two systems”, as well as Hong Kong’s position as a global financial, trading and shipping center.