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Xi Jinping: China, EU Should Be Committed To Multilateralism, Dialogue

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China and the European Union (EU) should be committed to peaceful coexistence, openness and cooperation, multilateralism and dialogue, and consultation, Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Monday, calling on the two sides to firmly promote the healthy and stable development of their comprehensive strategic partnership.

Xi made the remarks while co-hosting a China-Germany-EU leaders’ meeting on Monday evening in Beijing via video link with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose country currently holds the EU’s rotating presidency, European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

The world is undergoing profound changes unseen in a century, and the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the process, Xi said, adding that humanity is standing at a new crossroads.

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of China-EU diplomatic ties, and this was the second video meeting between Chinese and EU leaders in less than three months. It also comes after recent visits by senior Chinese diplomats to EU member states such as Italy, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Spain and Greece.

During the meeting, the leaders announced the official signing of the China-EU Geographical Indications (GI) Agreement.

GI is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin. The agreement is expected to prevent counterfeiting of GI and enable consumers on both sides to eat and use authentic high-quality products.

The two sides also vowed to accelerate the negotiation of the China-EU investment agreement and reaffirmed the goal of concluding the negotiation by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, Xi and the European leaders decided to establish a China-EU high-level dialogue on environment and climate, and one in the digital field, in order to build a green partnership and a digital cooperative partnership.

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Peng Liyuan Calls for Global Efforts in AIDS and TB Prevention and Treatment

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Peng Liyuan, wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping, called on people from all walks of life in all countries to join hands and take action to strengthen the prevention and treatment of AIDS and tuberculosis (TB), in order to benefit all mankind and build a global community of health for all.

Peng, also World Health Organization (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador for Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS, made the remarks via video link on Monday at the opening ceremony of a special high-level event on the sidelines of the United Nations High-Level Meeting on AIDS.

The event aimed to provide a platform for WHO member states to reassert their commitment to ending TB deaths among people living with HIV and deliberate on how they will intensify the response to HIV-associated TB in the context of COVID-19.

Peng said the global fight against AIDS and TB has achieved remarkable results in recent years thanks to the concerted efforts made by the international community.

China has gradually established a cooperation mechanism between prevention and control institutions of AIDS and TB, she said. The country has kept the prevalence of AIDS at a low level, and in the past 20 years, the incidence of TB has dropped by more than 40 percent and the mortality rate by more than 70 percent.

These achievements have been made due to the attention paid by the Chinese government, the efforts of the medical personnel and the silent contributions of the volunteers, she said.

Peng also shared some touching stories and expressed her respect for people and volunteers worldwide who have contributed to the prevention and treatment of the diseases.

Major communicable diseases are among the common challenges facing mankind, and it is people’s common wish to end the threats of AIDS and TB, said Peng.

She added that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has brought more challenges to the containment of the diseases, calling for global efforts to protect lives and forge ahead.

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Xi Jinping’s Qinghai Tour: Developing Special Industries, Improving Community-Level Governance

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Development of special industries and improvement of community-level governance were highlighted on the first day of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s inspection tour of northwest China’s Qinghai Province on Monday.

Xi, who is also the general secretary of Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, visited a company that makes Tibetan carpets and learned about the design and production processes. Noting the unique features of the carpets, he praised the locals for aptly combining traditional and modern crafts to meet diversified market demands.

The Tibetan carpet industry in Qinghai has helped people out of poverty and promoted rural vitalization and ethnic unity, he noted, adding that he hopes Qinghai will develop more such characteristic industries and achieve better development through innovation.

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Later on, Xi visited a residential community in provincial capital Xining to learn about its efforts in strengthening Party building, improving community-level governance and advancing ethnic unity.

“Whenever I go on an inspection tour, I would visit rural villages and urban communities to see how people’s lives are going,” said Xi.

He stressed strengthening primary-level CPC organizations, calling on them to offer high-quality community services in all aspects.

(Cover: Chinese President Xi Jinping visiting a carpet company in Qinghai Province, northwest China, June 7, 2021. /Xinhua)

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China Outlines Four-Point Proposal on Global Fight Against Corruption

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China made a four-point proposal on international cooperation against corruption on Wednesday, calling for a zero-tolerance attitude toward corruption and respect for differences between countries.

Zhao Leji, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the CPC (CCDI), made the remarks during a special session of the United Nations General Assembly on challenges and measures to prevent and combat corruption and strengthen international cooperation.

“China is an active participant in and contributor to global anti-corruption governance,” Zhao said. The country contributed to the adoption of the Beijing Declaration on Fighting Corruption by APEC and the High-Level Principles on Cooperation on Persons Sought for Corruption and Asset Recovery by the G20, and put forward the Beijing Initiative for the Clean Silk Road to deepen Belt and Road cooperation, he noted.

China’s anti-graft chief Zhao Leji addresses a special session of the UN General Assembly on fighting corruption via video link, June 2, 2021. /Xinhua

Outlining China’s proposal on global anti-corruption cooperation, he called for extensive efforts to uphold fairness and justice.

“The international community needs to forge broad political consensus, take a zero-tolerance attitude toward corruption, build zero-loophole institutions, carry out zero-barrier cooperation, and press ahead with cooperation on persons sought for corruption and asset recovery and on foreign business bribery,” he said.

Meanwhile, countries should respect differences between them and promote equality and mutual learning, he stressed.

“We need to respect the sovereignty and political and legal systems of each country, respect their right to choose their own ways of fighting corruption, and foster an international partnership for anti-corruption cooperation that is based on equality, respect for differences, exchanges and mutual learning, and common progress.”

China’s anti-graft chief called on the international community to “pursue mutually-beneficial cooperation through extensive consultation and joint contribution.”

He also urged countries across the world to “honor commitments and put action first.” Signatories to the UN Convention against Corruption should “honor their solemn commitment of fighting corruption together.”

China’s ‘sweeping victory’ against corruption

Zhao reviewed China’s anti-corruption drive, stressing that the CPC and the Chinese government “stand unequivocally against corruption.”

“We have adopted a holistic approach to address both symptoms and root causes of corruption, and combined law-based punishment, institutional checks, and education and guidance to made our anti-corruption governance more effective,” he said.

In 2020, disciplinary inspection commissions and supervision agencies across the country investigated about 618,000 corruption cases, leading to the punishment of 604,000 people, a report by China’s top anti-graft body said. A total 1,421 fugitives were brought back to China last year, the CCDI report showed.

With “multi-pronged measures” to tackle all acts of corruption, China has secured and consolidated a “sweeping victory” in the fight, Zhao said.

According to a recent survey by China’s National Bureau of Statistics, 95.8 percent of the Chinese people are satisfied with the country’s anti-corruption efforts, he noted.

‘We cannot allow corruption to continue’

The UN General Assembly convened its first ever special session on combating corruption on Wednesday. The special session will conclude on Friday.

President of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly Volkan Bozkir addresses a special session on fighting corruption in New York, June 2, 2021. /Xinhua

Addressing the special session, Volkan Bozkir, president of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, said Wednesday the effects of corruption are “detrimental to all of society” and that it should not be allowed to continue unchecked.

“Transnational financial crime and corruption are unfortunately commonplace in our interconnected, interdependent world,” Bozkir said, adding that corruption affects decision-making processes and “remains one of the most critical challenges for states, institutions, and communities.”

“We cannot allow corruption to continue. We will not,” he stressed.

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