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Remarks by H.E. Cui Tiankai, Chinese Ambassador to the US, At the Reception for the Mid-Autumn Festival

(From Chinese Embassy in America)

2019/09/07

September 6, 2019

Distinguished Guests,
Compatriots,
Students,
And Friends,

Good evening!

I would like to welcome you all to the reception at the embassy and to celebrate with us the Mid-Autumn Festival, a traditional Chinese festival. First of all, I wish all of you a joyous reunion and every success!

As a Chinese poem goes, "In the Mid-Autumn night hangs the bright full moon; with family reunion we ask no greater boon". The Mid-Autumn Festival is a day of reunion. On the evening of this day, family members would gather together to share mooncakes and tell the legends associated with the Festival, such as Chang'e flying to the moon and Wu Gang chopping the laurel. Over the recital of the verses like "May all of us remain long in this world, and share the moon even though thousands of miles apart", people would express their yearning for reunion and nostalgia for their families and hometowns. The Chinese people's aspiration for reunion and reunification goes in the same vein as the ideas of harmony and "all under heaven belong to one family" in the Chinese culture. This is the most profound part of our cultural identity that sustains the continuous development of China as a country and as a nation.

We will commemorate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China in 24 days. The past seven decades has been extraordinary in the history of the Chinese nation. Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese people have shown their fortitude and perseverance and pressed ahead against all difficulties. In a short span of decades, we completed industrialization which took developed countries several centuries, and achieved profound economic and social transformation. Starting from scratch, we have grown to the world's second biggest economy with leapfrogging national strength and international influence. Gone are the days when China was poor and weak after the Opium War in 1840. We have lifted over 700 million people out of poverty and contributed an annual average of 30% to global growth. The Chinese nation, tested by hardships that steeled our resolve and proved our resilience, has gone through a great transformation - we have stood up, grown rich and become strong. Today, we are closer than ever before to realizing the goal of national rejuvenation.

Dear Friends,

Compatriots,

National rejuvenation and reunification represents an unstoppable trend and the shared aspiration of the people. It is also a just and worthy cause to fight for. Dr. Sun Yat-sen said, "China is a united country. This is something deeply rooted in the historical identity of the Chinese nation." "Reunification is the shared goal of the whole Chinese people." That the two sides of the Taiwan Straits have not yet been reunited remains a historical trauma for the Chinese nation. The Taiwan issue was created when China was weak and tumultuous, and will and must be resolved as the nation embraces rejuvenation. The two sides of the Straits share the same historical origin and language and belong to the same nation. Blood is thicker than water. The natural affinity between us and our national identity are something not to be changed. Compatriots on both sides of the Straits and across the world need to work together for the peaceful development of cross-Straits relations and the peaceful reunification of our country. This is the right thing to do for our nation, and this is a prevailing trend of history.

You must be following the developments in Hong Kong very closely. Hong Kong is experiencing the most severe situation since its return to China 22 years ago. Some radicals attempt to make a mess of Hong Kong, challenge the bottom line of "One Country, Two Systems", trample on the dignity of the country and nation, and even go so far as to split the country. Their behaviors have evoked serious concern and strong opposition of Chinese compatriots across the world. We will never let their scheme prevail. Hong Kong is part of China, and "One Country" serves as the precondition and basis of the exercise of "Two Systems". Without it, there will be no "Two Systems" to speak of. Whatever difficulties and challenges lie ahead, our determination and confidence to safeguard national sovereignty and solidarity and uphold "One Country, Two Systems" will stay as firm as a rock. As we sing in a popular song, Hong Kong "has been standing in the wind for five thousand years"; how is it possible for her to stumble over such a setback? As an integral part of the Chinese nation, Hong Kong, dubbed as Pearl of the Orient, shares its weal and woe with all of us and will only shine when it is with us.

Dear Friends,

Compatriots,

In its five-millennia-year history, the Chinese nation has gone through all kinds of vicissitudes and risen above every possible risk and challenge. Every time it was put in adversity, it would triumph over the odds and emerged stronger and more steadfast. With the trail toward national rejuvenation blazed, we will and can build a better future for our country and nation by ourselves. Just as we learn from a Chinese verse that green hills cannot stop the river from flowing to the ocean, China's pursuit of national reunification and solidarity is not to be stopped by anyone, nor is the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, or China's joint endeavor with other countries to build a community with a shared future for mankind. As long as the whole nation stays united, and as long as all the compatriots join hands, we will be able to create a better future of reunion, reunification and rejuvenation.

I wish all of you a lovely night and a happy Mid-Autumn Festival!

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