Speech by H.E.Mr. Qian Qichen Former Vice Premier and Foreign Minister of the People's Republic of China At the International Summit On Democracy, Terrorism and Security Organized by the Club of Madrid
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It gives me a great honor to attend this Summit held in the picturesque and historical city of Madrid. Let me begin by thanking Mr. Fernando Henrique Cardoso, President of the Club of Madrid, for his warm invitation and the host for its meticulous arrangement and gracious hospitality.
This is my first time to the Summit organized by the Club of Madrid and I feel delighted to meet old friends and make new ones here. In the meantime, I also come to Madrid with a heavy heart as I recall the "3.11" terrorist attack here last year which shocked the whole world. I want to once again extend my deep condolences to the victims in this tragedy.
Five years into the 21st century, the international situation is undergoing profound changes while peace and development remain the themes of our times. Economic globalization is steadily moving forward, accompanied by the continuous progress of world multipolarization and breathtaking advancement of science and technology. Forces upholding peace and constraining war are gaining strength. However, we must not fail to see those rising destabilizing and unpredictable factors, the intertwined traditional and non-traditional security threats and rampant terrorist activities. Transnational problems such as the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), drug trafficking, transnational crimes and illegal migration keep cropping up and have yet to be eliminated once and for all.
The International Community has carried out productive anti-terror cooperation in recent years, including closer consultations, intelligence sharing and freezing assets of the terrorist organizations. However, one must also recognize that it remains a long and uphill journey for the world to effectively prevent and fight terrorist activities.
Terrorism has become one of the top threats to world peace and security. The terrorist activities, such as the terrorist incident in Saudi Arabia, explosion in Indonesia, hostage incident in Russia, "9. 11" in the United States and "3.11" in Spain, have all inflicted substantial casualties among the innocent civilians and immeasurable economic losses. How to effectively deal with terrorism and achieve world lasting tranquility remains a primary task for all countries in the world.
This Summit offers an important opportunity to strengthen international cooperation in the fight against terrorism. I now wish to share with you my observations in this regard.
Firstly, enhancing international cooperation to jointly cope with the terrorist threat. With globalization going deeper, countries now find their interests more intertwined and interrelated than before. Thus, such a global challenge as terrorism has to be met with global coordination. For the purpose of stronger international cooperation in this regard, it is critical to anchor the international relations on a more democratic and legal basis and help the developing countries to enhance their counter-terrorism capabilities.
Secondly, addressing both the symptoms and root causes by paying equal attention to prevention. There are deep and complicated root causes behind the scourge of terrorism. Poverty tends to bring about social injustice, fuel extremist ideas and trigger regional turbulence. They are easily exploited by the terrorist groups. In this connection, actively implementing the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), effectively eradicating poverty and properly addressing the regional hot-spot issues are conducive to removing the root causes of terrorism. We need to redouble our efforts to this end.
Thirdly, upholding multilateralism and giving scope to the role of the UN. Being the most universal, representative and authoritative international organization, the UN serves as an important platform for multilateral cooperation aimed at mutual benefit and win-win results. Counter-terrorism efforts under the UN, including the Executive Bureau of the UN Security Council's Counter-Terrorism Committee, have played a leading role in strengthening and coordinating the global counter-terrorism campaign. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the UN's founding. All countries have put high expectations on the UN reform, hoping that the reform will raise the world body's efficiency and its capability in coping with various new threats, terrorism included. I hope that the discussions of the High-level Panel Report will yield positive results.
Fourthly, promoting dialogues among civilizations and strengthening exchanges and communication. In a diversified and colorful world, cultural and religious differences among countries exist independent of man's will. These distinctions and differences should all the more encourage us to learn from and complement each other for common progress. We disapprove of linking terrorism with any specific country, ethnic group or religion. The Declaration on Dialogues among Cultures and Civilizations adopted at ASEM last year laid emphasis on respecting the diversity of civilizations and facilitating dialogues and exchanges among them with a view to attaining better mutual understanding and harmonious coexistence of all peoples. I believe this carries important practical implications for the international counter-terrorism cooperation.
China has also suffered a great deal from terrorism. Last June, 11 Chinese nationals were murdered by terrorists in Afghanistan. The East Turkistan terrorist forces pose grave threats to stability and security in China and Central Asia. I hereby wish to reiterate that China unfalteringly condemns and opposes terrorism of all forms. We have stepped up counter-terrorism efforts in the various domestic authorities and taken a series of measures in legislation, aviation, finance and customs to prevent any terrorist incidents. We have taken an active part in the international counter-terrorism cooperation, supported the UN in its leading role in the anti-terrorism campaign and carried out productive bilateral cooperation with the relevant countries. We stand ready to work with the international community, Spain included, to push forward the international counter-terrorism campaign.
Thank you, Mr. President.