Nanjing Massacre victims remembered worldwide amidst attempts to rewrite history
BEIJING, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- The victims of the Nanjing Massacre that shook the world in its brutality when Japan invaded China are being remembered through events worldwide that are also calling to cherish hard-won peace and acknowledge history with honesty.
An annual memorial for the nearly 300,000 people brutally killed 80 years ago was held Wednesday in Nanjing, the city in eastern China that suffered one of the bloodiest times the world has ever witnessed.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and senior officials joined representatives from all walks of life at the state memorial ceremony marking the 80th anniversary of the carnage to pay a silent tribute.
Over 440 overseas Chinese groups reportedly plan to hold memorial ceremonies for Nanjing Massacre victims Wednesday. More than 10,000 overseas Chinese in the United States, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands and Argentina are expected to attend these commemorations.
In Japan, some 200 people attended a testimony meeting in Shizuoka city on Tuesday. Lu Ling, daughter of a massacre survivor who was stabbed 37 times by Japanese soldiers, shared her mother's ordeal with the Japanese attendees.
"The massacre imposed tremendous suffering on my family, the people in Nanjing, and the Chinese people," she said.
Masataka Mori, a former professor of irenology -- the study of peace -- at Shizuoka University, said people were revising history to distort the truth about the Nanjing carnage.
"It is hoped that more people could know about (the Nanjing Massacre) and pass on the truth," Mori said.
The massacre was also mourned in The Hague, Netherlands, Tuesday. Some 200 Chinese people and students living there attended the memorial, held one day ahead of China's "National Memorial Day for Nanjing Massacre Victims".
"We hold a memorial ceremony in The Netherlands not only to mourn the victims, but also to tell the truth (about) history. No attempt to deny history will ever be accepted," said Zhong Linchang, head of the Association of Cantonese Business in The Netherlands.
Henk Kool, president of Friendship Society Netherlands-China, urged Japanese who deny the truth to look into the facts.
"If you want to be forgiven, you must first recognize and remember," he told Xinhua.
In the U.S. city of San Francisco, hundreds of people from the Chinese, Korean and Philippine communities gathered Sunday to remember the period of brutality and the victims' spirit of resilience and heroism.
Jennifer Cheung, chairperson of the Rape of Nanking Redress Coalition and one of the organizers of the event, said the commemoration meant to promote peace instead of harboring hatred toward the Japanese perpetrators.
However, the Japanese government has repeatedly refused to apologize for the atrocities committed by the war-time imperial Japanese troops and continues to deny the fact that approximately 200,000 Asian women and girls, including Chinese, Koreans and Filipinas, were forced into sexual servitude for Japanese soldiers during World War II, Cheung said.
"No real peace can come... without (an) apology from the Japanese government," she said.
Japan invaded northeast China in September 1931, followed by a full-scale invasion of China on July 7, 1937.
On Dec. 13, 1937, Nanjing fell to the invaders who slaughtered civilians and soldiers who had put down their arms, and burnt and looted for nearly a month. About 300,000 Chinese were killed, and 20,000 women raped.
In February 2014, China's top legislature designated Dec. 13 as a national memorial day for the victims of the Nanjing Massacre.
Xiplomacy echoes call of the times at UN meetings
BEIJING, Oct. 2 (Xinhua) -- With the world beset with such grave challenges as a raging pandemic, continuing recession, surging isolationism and rising hegemonism, the recent series of UN high-level meetings represent the world's latest bid to find humanity's way forward.
In multiple speeches delivered at the most important international platform, Chinese President Xi Jinping expounded his approach to addressing the fundamental questions of the times and his vision on uniting all nations sharing the planet to build a better shared future.
"Peace and development remain the underlying trend of the times, and people everywhere crave even more strongly for peace, development and win-win cooperation," he said at the general debate of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA). "COVID-19 will not be the last crisis to confront humanity, so we must join hands and be prepared to meet even more global challenges."
The Chinese leader drew the world together with a plan and a vision of how to work, said Stephen Perry, chairman of Britain's 48 Group Club. "He is a beacon of hope in a dark moment of the planet. I hope he can carry other national leaders with him and to focus on making the world work right."
MULTILATERALISM AS FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE
At a historic juncture 75 years ago, the United Nations, the epitome of multilateralism, was established following the scourge of two world wars to maintain lasting peace and promote common development.
"Today, we face our own 1945 moment," UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said at the opening of the 75th UNGA, warning about a new standoff as the multilateral system, the foundation for globalization and integration, is exposed to salient risks and challenges, such as treaty withdrawals and military and economic bullying practices.
Noting that the past 75 years has been a period of rapid development of multilateralism, Xi stressed at the High-level Meeting to Commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations that "international affairs ought to be addressed through consultation among us all."
"Problems facing the world are big and many, and global challenges are on the increase," he said. "They should and can only be resolved through dialogue and cooperation."
This commitment to equality-based consultation has been an essential feature of Xi's diplomatic thought, now widely known as Xiplomacy. Since he took office as Chinese president in 2013, he has reiterated the principle on a variety of international occasions, steadfastly advocating multilateralism over unilateralism and win-win cooperation over zero-sum confrontation.
In his landmark UNGA address five years ago, Xi pointed out that all countries are interdependent and share a common future, and called for global efforts to "renew our commitment to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter" and "build a new type of international relations featuring win-win cooperation."
Over the years, China has demonstrated that it is not only an advocate but also a practitioner of multilateralism and defender of the UN-centered international system. China, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a recent forum, has joined almost all universal intergovernmental organizations and international conventions.
Calling China "a pillar of multilateralism," Guterres said in a recent interview with Xinhua that he expects China to "continue its proactive policies to strengthen the UN's global work on maintaining peace and security and encouraging sustainable development."
COMMON DEVELOPMENT AS GOLDEN KEY
Underneath the various challenges troubling today's world lie assorted development problems, which have only become more acute against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic and its multidimensional impact.
"The issue of development should be highlighted in the global macro framework; and there should be a greater emphasis on the promotion and protection of the rights to subsistence and development," Xi said at the latest UN meetings.
China is committed to peaceful, open, cooperative and common development, he reiterated, echoing his statements five years ago that "development of all is the real development, and sustainable development is the good development."
"We aim to foster, over time, a new development paradigm with domestic circulation as the mainstay and domestic and international circulations reinforcing each other," Xi said. "This will create more space for China's economic development and add impetus to global economic recovery and growth."
Commenting on the surge of anti-globalization sentiment over recent years, Xi warned that "burying one's head in the sand like an ostrich in the face of economic globalization or trying to fight it with Don Quixote's lance goes against the trend of history."
Championing common development, China has rolled out such platforms as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the China International Import Expo and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), which have offered a sliver lining in the pandemic-triggered global economic recession.
For example, the BRI, after seven years of steady development, has now become the world's largest platform of international cooperation, and the China-initiated AIIB has provided 24 members with nearly 20 billion U.S. dollars to finance their infrastructure construction.
Testifying to its commitment to inclusive development, China has achieved significant progress in promoting women's development. It is recognized by the World Health Organization as one of the 10 fast-track countries in women's and children's health. At the UN meetings, Xi called for concerted efforts "to support women and help them live their lives to the full."
On the front of poverty alleviation, a top priority in Xi's mind, China is set to lift out of poverty all rural residents living below the current poverty line within the set time frame, meeting 10 years ahead of schedule the poverty eradication target set out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Calling China's poverty-fighting campaign "an inspiring strategy," Alicia Barcena, executive secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, said China has made it possible "to accelerate the reduction of poverty at the global level."
SHARED FUTURE AS GUIDING LIGHT
In a world which Guterres said has "a surplus of multilateral challenges and a deficit of multilateral solutions," Xi called on all countries to rise above differences in nationality, culture and ideology, and join hands to build a better shared future for all.
The vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind, first introduced to the international community in 2013, has become the flagship concept in Xiplomacy and a consistent underlying theme of Xi's remarks on international relations.
Stressing the significance of the ecosystem to humanity's future, Xi suggested that all countries "take up our lofty responsibility for the entire human civilization, ... balance and coordinate economic development and ecological protection, and work together to build a prosperous, clean and beautiful world."
In a clear demonstration of its dedication to that vision, China, the first country to bear the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic and also among the first to put it under effective control, has been fighting shoulder to shoulder with the international community against the coronavirus disease.
Recognizing that in a pandemic no one is safe until everyone is safe, China has sent medical expert teams to 34 countries to help prevent and control the epidemic, and provided aid for more than 150 countries and international organizations.
As regards climate change, another challenge that threatens the future of the entire humankind, Xi announced at the latest UN meetings that China aims to have CO2 emissions peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060.
"There is no doubt that efforts from China will play a major role in shaping how the rest of the world progresses on climate action," said Helen Clarkson, CEO of the London-based Climate Group, in an interview with Xinhua.
President of Turkmenistan congratulates new Prime Minister of Japan
President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov addressed congratulations and best wishes to Mr. Yoshihide Suga on his election as Prime Minister of Japan.
“I am confident that under your leadership, Japan will reach new heights in political and socio-economic development, strengthen its authority in the international arena”, emphasized the Turkmen leader in his address.
Expressing satisfaction with the positive dynamics of the interstate dialogue, the President of Turkmenistan emphasized that bilateral cooperation had reached a qualitatively new level over the past years.
“Today our countries successfully interact in a wide range of areas. I am confident that due to our joint efforts, the Turkmen-Japanese relations, which are of a strategic nature, will continue to develop dynamically for the benefit of our peoples”, says the President of Turkmenistan in his address.
Taking this opportunity, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov wished Mr. Yoshihide Suga good health, happiness and success in his versatile activity in the name of the further prosperity of friendly Japan.
Turkmenistan’s delegation participates in online workshop of the ministers of finances and health protection of Asian and Pacific countries
Aspects of universal health coverage in Asian Pacific region in the context of response to COVD-19 pandemic and its impact have been discussed at joint online workshop of the ministers of finances and health protection with participation of Turkmenistan’s delegation.
Share of practice in prevention and combat against the spread of coronavirus and further measures for investment to health protection sphere and universal health coverage have been the main goals of virtual meeting organized by Asian Development Bank and the Ministry of Finances of Japan.
It was highlighted that pandemic of dangerous infectious disease has caused global crisis, having made negative impact on all aspects of life activity of humankind.
At the same time, consolidation of efforts in support and promotion of universal health coverage, which is to provide access to qualitative medical services for the population, receives special currency. The achievement of this goal will support to dynamic rehabilitation of the economies and protection from similar major threats in future, having provided favourable opportunities for sustainable development and progress in Asian Pacific region.
In this regard, it is worth to mention that important initiatives of the Head of the State, which are aimed at consolidation of international efforts in combating against new threat including initiatives for activation of fruitful cooperation in scientific diplomacy and in WHO direction, were approved and supported by the world community.
All conditions are made in the country for assertion of the principles of healthy life style in the country together with provision of wide spectrum of quality medical services.
SPECIAL MEETING OF FOREIGN MINISTERS OF THE "CENTRAL ASIA + JAPAN" DIALOGUE
On August 11, 2020, a special online meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Central Asia + Japan Dialogue had been held.
The meeting, which was held under the auspices of the Japanese Foreign Ministry, was attended by the heads of the foreign affairs agencies of five Central Asian countries.
As part of a constructive conversation, high-ranking diplomats discussed regional cooperation, as well as well-coordinated interaction between the CA countries and Japan, taking into account the spread of the new coronavirus infection on a global scale.
During the speeches, the effectiveness of this format of diversified cooperation, based on the principles of mutual growth, solidarity and comprehensive support in key areas of mutually beneficial partnership, was especially noted.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan R.O. Meredov, expressing gratitude to the head of the Japanese Foreign Ministry for the initiative to organize this ministerial online meeting, especially noted the timeliness of the meeting.
Undoubtedly, since the establishment of the Central Asia + Japan Dialogue in 2004, this format of multilateral interaction has developed significantly. The topic of discussions within this format has significantly expanded, which today covers topical issues of ensuring international and regional security, sustainable development, creating favorable conditions for effective trade-economic ties, active exchange in the cultural-humanitarian field.
As the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan noted, in these conditions, when the world community is fighting an urgent struggle against a new infection, this communication format, which unites the states of Central Asia as an important region of the planet and Japan, cannot remain aloof from solving the acute problem faced by humanity. In this context, the current dialogue of the Foreign Ministers provides an opportunity for an exchange of views on the complex situation in the world and ways to overcome it.
Based on the need to develop a global response to the challenges of our time, it is advisable to intensify the process of consolidating the efforts of the countries in countering the pandemic.
In this regard, the Turkmen side also took the initiative to develop, within the framework of the "Central Asia + Japan" Dialogue, a Program document that includes the basic principles of solidarity activities of the participating States in the fight against a new type of infection and specific measures aimed at preventing and treating diseases, caused by it.
The head of the Foreign Ministry of Turkmenistan also expressed special gratitude to the Japanese side for their readiness to provide a grant project in the field of medicine within the framework of the Official Development Assistance Program of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan.
As is known, Turkmen doctors highly appreciate the knowledge and experience gained in the course of numerous multilateral and two-way videoconferences with leading Japanese specialists.
Currently, the constant exchange of knowledge and information on the methods of treatment and prevention of infectious diseases, medical technologies, drugs and equipment, personal protective equipment for the full use of the mechanisms of scientific diplomacy is of great importance.
It is known that over the years of partnership within the framework of this format, the participating countries have identified a number of areas of multilateral interaction, including such areas as security, economy and culture. The implementation of joint projects in these areas remains an urgent task for the near future.
During the meeting, the ministers exchanged views on the agenda of the upcoming 8th meeting of the "Central Asia + Japan" Dialogue. In particular, they discussed the possibilities of developing and adopting the Concept of partnership between the states of Central Asia and Japan in the field of security, developing a new Platform for the development of economic partnership, preparation and discussion of the Roadmap on cooperation of the participating states in the field of high technologies, as well as preparation of the Program of cooperation between the participating countries in the socio-cultural sphere.
Xinhua Headlines: China adopts law on safeguarding national security in Hong Kong
China's top legislature unanimously adopted the "landmark" law on safeguarding national security in Hong Kong.
People convicted of the national security crimes could face up to life imprisonment.
The law is a "sword" deterring people who endanger national security and a "guardian" protecting Hong Kong residents.
BEIJING, June 30 (Xinhua) -- Chinese lawmakers Tuesday voted to adopt the Law of the People's Republic of China on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR).
The law was passed unanimously at the 20th session of the Standing Committee of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), China's top legislature.
President Xi Jinping signed a presidential order to promulgate the law, which goes into effect on the date of promulgation.
With 66 articles in six chapters, the law clearly defines the duties and government bodies of the HKSAR for safeguarding national security and four categories of offences -- secession, subversion, terrorist activities, and collusion with a foreign country or external elements to endanger national security -- and their corresponding penalties.
According to the law, the central government will set up an office in the HKSAR for safeguarding national security.
The HKSAR will establish a committee for safeguarding national security, which is under the supervision of and accountable to the central government. To be chaired by the HKSAR chief executive, the committee shall have a national security adviser designated by the central government. The Hong Kong police force will also set up a department for safeguarding national security, according to the law.
After the law was passed, the NPC Standing Committee consulted its HKSAR Basic Law Committee and the HKSAR government, and adopted on Tuesday afternoon, by a unanimous vote, a decision to list the law in Annex III to the HKSAR Basic Law.
The newly-adopted decision stipulates that the law shall be applied locally in the HKSAR by way of promulgation by the region.
The law came into force in Hong Kong at 11:00 p.m. local time on Tuesday upon its promulgation by the HKSAR government in the gazette.
HKSAR Chief Executive Carrie Lam said in a statement that the HKSAR government welcomes the passage of the law.
"I am confident that after the implementation of the national security law, the social unrest which has troubled Hong Kong people for nearly a year will be eased and stability will be restored, thereby enabling Hong Kong to start anew, focus on economic development and improve people's livelihood," she said.
The law came after prolonged social unrest and escalating street violence had plunged Hong Kong into the gravest situation since its return to the motherland in 1997. Rampant activities of "Hong Kong independence" organizations and violent radicals as well as blatant interference by external forces have disrupted Hong Kong residents' daily life and threatened their safety.
Addressing the closing meeting of the NPC Standing Committee session, Li Zhanshu, chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, said the unanimous passage of the law and the decision has reflected the common will of the Chinese people including Hong Kong compatriots.
Stressing that national security, social stability and the order of rule of law are the premises of the development of Hong Kong, Li said the legislation represents the aspirations of the people and an irresistible trend of the times.
In a statement, the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council voiced firm support for the law, calling it a "milestone" event that will usher in a turning point for Hong Kong to end chaos and bring back order.
In a separate statement, the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the HKSAR said the promulgation and implementation of the law at the occasion of the 23rd anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland is an event worth celebrating for all Chinese people, including Hong Kong compatriots.
Nearly 2.93 million Hong Kong residents earlier signed a petition in support of the national security legislation during an eight-day campaign starting May 24.
"SWORD" AND "GUARDIAN"
The Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council said in its statement that for a tiny number of people endangering national security, the law will be a "sharp sword" hanging over their heads.
But for the vast majority of Hong Kong residents including foreigners in Hong Kong, the law will be a "guardian" that protects their rights, freedoms and peaceful life, said the office.
According to the law, people convicted of the national security crimes could face up to life imprisonment.
Convicted criminals will be disqualified from running for public office, and people in public office who are found guilty of the crimes will be removed from their posts.
The law shall apply to acts committed after its entry into force for the purpose of conviction and imposition of punishment, according to its provision.
Upon promulgation, the law will resolutely and effectively safeguard national security and ensure that the "one country, two systems" cause is steered toward the right direction, said top legislator Li Zhanshu.
The law will vigorously uphold the constitutional order and the order of rule of law in the HKSAR, forestall and deter external interference, and safeguard Hong Kong's fundamental, long-term and current interests, he said.