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China offers a way to save Sino-American relations on the brink of absolute collapse

Elvira Kadyrova

Modern history has witnessed severe “bad weather” in the relationship between the two superpowers – China and the United States. Trade wars, all sorts of US attempts to boil the situation around Chinese domestic politics, as well as demonizing attacks on the world stage … It seems that the tangle is so tightly wound that it is impossible to unwind it in order to return to the relatively calm political coexistence of these two giants.

Meanwhile, Beijing expressed its “readiness to develop Sino-US relations without conflict, without confrontation, based on mutual respect and mutually beneficial cooperation, coordination and stability,” a quote from Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s recent interview with Xinhua News Agency.

The head of Chinese diplomacy was asked about possible priorities on the agenda of the two countries, when relations between them are going through the most difficult period since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1979.

Wang Yi identified two prerequisites for further rebuilding ties:

  • China will firmly defend its sovereignty, security and development interests as this is a legal right that China has as an independent sovereign state.
  • The United States must respect the principle of sovereign equality enshrined in the UN Charter, learn to get along with different systems and civilizations and adapt to peaceful coexistence, and accept the reality that the world is moving towards multipolarity.

The Chinese Foreign Minister also announced a kind of four-point framework that should be put in place in the near future:

First, you need to stay away from red lines and avoid confrontation. Mutual respect is the main prerequisite for the lasting development of Sino-US relations. China never intended and never will interfere in American elections or other internal US affairs. Likewise, the US must abandon its fantasy of remaking China for US needs. The United States must end its interference in China’s internal affairs and abandon its irrational attempts to pressure China’s legitimate rights and interests.

Second, maintaining open channels for frank dialogue. Dialogue is a prerequisite for problem solving. Without dialogue, problems will only accumulate and may even spiral out of control. China leaves open doors for dialogue. Beijing is ready to speak and interact with the United States in a spirit of equality and openness, and to resume dialogue mechanisms at all levels and in all areas.

Third, refusal to dissociate and support cooperation… The interests of the two countries are closely intertwined. The forced destruction of ties will deal a long-term blow to bilateral relations and jeopardize the security of international industrial chains and the interests of all countries. As COVID-19 is still raging in the world, China is ready for mutually beneficial cooperation with the United States in the fight against epidemics and economic recovery, is ready on a reciprocal basis to share experience and knowledge on containing COVID-19, and is also ready to join together with the United States in making global response and multilateral cooperation in the fight against COVID-19.

Fourth, abandoning the zero-sum mentality and supporting shared responsibility. COVID-19 again makes it clear that humanity is a community with a common future. Our world continues to face many global challenges. Traditional and non-traditional security challenges are interconnected. Almost all regional and international hotspots require a coordinated response from China, the United States and other countries. China and the United States must always remember the well-being of humanity, fulfill their responsibilities as two major countries, coordinate efforts and cooperate as needed within the UN and other multilateral institutions, and act together for peace and stability throughout the world. /// nCa, 10 August 2020

The full text of the interview of State Counselor, Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China Wang Yi to Xinhua News Agency on the current state of Sino-American relations is published on the official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China: https://www.fmprc.gov.cn/mfa_eng/zxxx_662805/t1804328.shtml

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