From June 3 to 17, 2002, President Jiang Zemin attended the summit meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia in Almaty of Kazakhstan and the Second Summit of Shanghai Cooperation Organization in St. Petersburg of Russia, and paid state visits to Latvia, Estonia, Iceland and Lithuania at invitation.
In the joint interview by accompanying journalists on June 17, Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan said that President Jiang's tour is a major diplomatic activity China has initiated in Europe and Asia against the backdrop of profoundly changed international and regional situations at present. President Jiang's visit has achieved expected aim of increasing understanding and consolidating cooperation and is crowned with success.
According to Tang, President Jiang first attended the summit meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia in Almaty of Kazakhstan(CICA). CICA is a regional forum aiming at promoting regional security dialogue and exchanges. It plays an active part in promoting regional security and stability. China has actively participated in various activities of the CICA process from the very beginning. Jiang delivered an important speech titled Strengthen Dialogue and Cooperation, Promote Peace and Security in the summit, suggesting that in the context of world multi-polarization and the continuously growing trend of economic globalization, Asian countries should learn the from each other's strong point to offset their own weaknesses, get united and coordinative, and make joint efforts to build a beautiful home for the people in every Asian country. Jiang stressed that as an element of maintaining world peace and promoting common development, China has made great distribution to the peace and stability of Asia. Jiang also reiterated the Chinese government's principled stance on fighting against three forces of terrorism, splittism and extremism. In this summit, leaders from various countries signed and issued Almaty Act and CICA Declaration on Eliminating Terrorism and Promoting Dialogue Among Civilizations, which has shown the international community the firm belief of member countries of CICA on the dedication to maintaining peace, security and stability in the Asian region.
During the summit, President Jiang held bilateral meetings with leaders of Kazakhstan, Pakistan, India and Afghanistan respectively. In the respective meetings with leaders of India and pakistan, Jiang called on both sides to proceed from the fundamental interests of the national and regional peace and development and solve their disputes through dialogue and negotiations. When meeting with the Afghan leader, Jiang reaffirmed that the Chinese government supports the reconstruction process of Afghanistan and hopes various factions in Afghanistan to be harmonious and united to jointly make the Loya Jirga a complete success. The above-mentioned important bilateral meetings have played a constructive role in promoting regional peace and stability.
Tang said that attending the Second Summit of Shanghai Cooperation Organization(SCO) in St. Petersburg of Russia is the main theme of Jiang's visit. During the summit, leaders of the six member countries exchanged in-depth opinions and reached broad consensus on how to push forward institutionalization of SCO and strengthen multi-lateral cooperation, as well as the major issues concerning current international and regional situation. Jiang delivered an important speech titled Develop Shanghai Spirit, Promote World Peace. He fully affirmed the achievements of SCO over the past year and proposed three points of expediting institutional construction, strengthening unity and coordination and enhancing cooperation. Jiang expounded on the importance and necessity of promoting Shanghai Spirit of mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, coordination, respecting diversity of cultures and seeking common development. Leaders of the six countries signed six major political documents including the Charter of the SCO, an agreement on anti-terrorism agency in the region, and the declaration of presidents of the SCO members. Jiang also held separate meetings with Russian, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tajikistani, and Uzbekistani presidents and exchanged opinions on bilateral relations and international and regional issues of common concern.
Tang said that this SCO summit is an important meeting convened after the self-construction of SCO entered a critical stage, and it has produced results of significant meaning. First it further clarified future direction of development and guiding principles of SCO and strengthened unity and coordination. Second, it vigorously promoted the institutional construction of SCO. Thirdly, it made a substantial step in the cooperation in the security field. Leaders of the six member countries signed the agreement on the establishment of a regional anti-terrorism agency and decided to set up an anti-terrorism agency in Bishkek. The move means that the six countries will adopt even more resolute actions to fight the three forces of terrorism, splittism and extremism, and keep regional security and stability. Fourthly, it further coordinated the stances of various parties on major international and regional issues. Fifthly, bilateral meetings between President Jiang and state heads of Russia and Central Asian countries have strongly advanced the good-neighborly and friendly cooperative relations between China and the above-mentioned countries, as well as jointly promoted international and regional peace and development.
President Jiang's state visits to Latvia, Estonia, Iceland and Lithuania are the first time for the Chinese leader of state to pay a visit to the four countries. The four governments paid great attention to Jiang's visit and treated him with the highest standards, which has fully manifested their positive attitudes towards the development of ties with China and friendly feelings of the peoples in the four countries. During the visits, Jiang held separate talks with the four state leaders and met with government leaders, parliamentary leaders, and people from various circles of the four countries. So the visit has registered important achievements.
Firstly, the visit helps increase mutual understanding and trust and consolidate the political foundation of bilateral ties. Jiang emphasized that the key to the smooth growth of ties between China and the four countries is to respect the difference on social systems, cultural traditions and values and ideas, and to develop the friendly cooperative relations in the spirits of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit and seeking common grounds while shelving differences. Jiang also stressed that China has always proposed that every country, big or small, poor or rich, strong or weak, is an equal member of the international community and enjoys the equal rights of participating in the international affairs. The Chinese government will unswervingly stick to this principled stance. The leaders of the four countries highly evaluated Jiang's proposal and view. Jiang also expounded on China's principled stances on the questions of Taiwan, Dalai Lama and human rights. China and the four countries reiterated their willingness to continue expanding and deepening friendly cooperative relations on mutual respect for each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit and peaceful coexistence. The four leaders also reiterated they would keep their promise of following the One China policy.
Secondly, the visit has given new impetus to the further development of mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields between China and the four countries. During the visit, President Jiang exchanged opinions with the four leaders on strengthening cooperation, further tapping new fields for cooperation and exploring new ways to cooperate, which has indicated developing direction for bilateral cooperation. The four countries earnestly hoped to further develop the mutually beneficial trade and economic cooperation with China and put forward a series of detailed suggestions, to which President Jiang made positive response.
Thirdly, the visit strengthened contact and coordination on major international issues between China and the four countries. President Jiang and the four leaders expanded their consensus through exchanging opinions on current international and regional situation. Jiang pointed out that peace and development remain the main theme of the time, but they are faced with new challenges such as international terrorism, transnational crimes and ecological deterioration and other increasingly severe problems concerning the whole world. The settlement of these problems calls on the unity, coordination and concerted efforts by all the countries. The leaders of the four countries totally agreed on it, considered China as an important force in maintaining world peace and stability and hoped China to play an even bigger role in international affairs.
Tang finally said that President Jiang's 6-nation visit bears an important realistic meaning and far-reaching historical influence in increasing mutual understanding and traditional friendship, promoting peace, security and stability in Asian region, speeding up the construction and development of SCO and spurring the establishment of a righteous and reasonable international political and economic new order.