|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on December 4, 2020|
The UN Security Council will hold a high-level videoconference debate on cooperation between the United Nations and the African Union on December 4. State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, as the special representative of Chinese President Xi Jinping, will attend the virtual meeting.
As COVID-19 spreads unabated and deeply impacts the economic and social development of African countries, Africa faces new challenges in peace and security. Against such a backdrop, it is of important significance for rotating chair South Africa to hold this high-level videoconference debate on cooperation between the United Nations and the African Union. We hope all parties will take this opportunity to consolidate consensus on solidarity and cooperation, support Africa's anti-epidemic endeavor and help it achieve peace and development.
CCTV: China has announced its achievement of the aim to eradicate absolute poverty by 2020 and shared its experience in poverty alleviation with developing countries. Prime Minister of Thailand Prayut expressed high appreciation for China's experience in targeted poverty eradication. Director-General of the International Labor Organization (ILO) Guy Ryder said China's achievements in eradicating severe poverty serve as an example for other countries. Do you have any comment?
Hua Chunying: The Chinese government attaches high importance to poverty relief. Over the past 70 years or so, 850 million Chinese have risen above poverty, contributing over 70 percent to the world's poverty reduction. In particular, since the 18th National Congress of CPC, the Chinese government has given top priority to the battle against poverty in its governance and organized the world's biggest and toughest poverty-relief battle in human history. After unremitting efforts for eight years, we have won the battle against poverty in the new era and all the impoverished rural population, according to the current poverty standard, has been lifted out of poverty. By the end of last month, China has removed the last 52 remaining counties from the poverty list, which means all 832 registered poor counties in China have shaken off poverty. Almost 100 million people are lifted out of poverty, marking a major victory of the eradication of absolute poverty and region-wide poverty. The Chinese people are very proud of this huge achievement in poverty alleviation, which has also won high acclaim from the international community.
In this tough battle against poverty, the international community has lent substantial support and assistance to China. In turn, China has also made its contributions to international poverty alleviation cause with concrete actions. China has recently released the report of Eradication of Extreme Poverty: China's Practices to share with the international community its experience in poverty reduction. We've set up the China-UN Peace and Development Fund and the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund, and made solid progress in cooperation projects under such frameworks as the Pilot Project of Poverty Reduction Cooperation in East Asia and the China-Africa Poverty Reduction and People's Welfare Plan. China has helped establish 24 agricultural technology demonstration centers in Africa, benefiting more than 500,000 local people. China has continued to help developing countries to improve capacity building through bilateral and multilateral channels to contribute to international cooperation on poverty alleviation.
Going forward, the Chinese side will earnestly implement President Xi Jinping's major measures to deepen South-South cooperation, continue to support and help developing countries, especially the least developed countries to eliminate poverty, develop economy, build more brand and demonstration poverty alleviation projects, and inject new impetus into the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
On China's path of poverty eradication, we leave no one behind. We also hope the joint efforts by all can lift all countries out of poverty as soon as possible so that people around the world will live a better life.
Xinhua News Agency: Yesterday at the special session of the UN General Assembly in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, UN Secretary-General Guterres said that "From the start, the World Health Organization provided factual information and scientific guidance that should have been the basis for a coordinated global response. Unfortunately, many of these recommendations were not followed. And in some situations, there was a rejection of facts and an ignoring of the guidance." He also noted, "In a global crisis, we must meet the expectations of those we serve with unity, solidarity and coordinated multilateral global action." What's China's comment on his remarks?
Hua Chunying: The special session of the UN General Assembly in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic was held yesterday. State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended the session as President Xi Jinping's special representative and delivered remarks via videolink. Faced with another round of COVID-19 pandemic, the global fight against it has entered a challenging stage. We sincerely hope all sides can strengthen solidarity, expand consensus and cooperate in this fight so that we can achieve the victory as soon as possible.
Yesterday State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi made some Chinese propositions at the special session. First, we need to act decisively to contain the spread of the virus. Second, we need to enhance solidarity and cooperation. The major countries, in particular, must play an exemplary role in promoting collaboration. Third, we need to coordinate COVID-19 control and economic and social development, pursue a "green recovery" of the economy, and keep global industrial and supply chains stable. Fourth, we need to step up support for developing countries and provide greater humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable communities to lessen the burden of developing countries. Fifth, we need to foster an enabling international environment for the fight against COVID-19. I believe all sides should heed the common call of the international community, eliminate all forms of unilateral sanctions and other unilateral compulsory measures, and foster a sound environment for solidarity against the virus.
Since the COVID-19 broke out, the Chinese government has put people first, given top priority to saving lives, made scientific and targeted efforts to prevent and control the pandemic, and become the first one that effectively contained the virus. China has carried out global humanitarian actions that were the biggest in the PRC's history, and shouldered our responsibility as the world's biggest provider of medical supplies. China is ready to stay in close communication and cooperation with the WHO and other countries, support the WHO's key leading role in global anti-epidemic efforts, and contribute to an early victory of the fight against virus and the building of a global community of health for all.
Bloomberg: There have been news reports that the U.S. Justice Department is in talks with Meng Wanzhou's legal team about a possible resolution in the legal case against the chief financial officer of Huawei. The deal, if signed, could allow her to return home from Canada in exchange for admitting criminal wrongdoing. Does the foreign ministry have any further information or comments on it?
Hua Chunying: I don't know where this information came from. But frankly speaking, the report reminds me of the 2013 book American Trap by former Alstrom executive Frédéric Pierucci, in which he described what he had gone through in a very detailed manner. What you've just mentioned is almost the same with his experience.
China has an explicit position on this issue. Ms. Meng Wanzhou is innocent. The nature of the Meng Wanzhou incident is very clear. It is entirely out of the U.S. government's political agenda to suppress Chinese hi-tech enterprises, and Canada played a very disgraceful role in this process. This is in every way a grave political incident.
China once again urges the US side to immediately withdraw the arrest warrant and extradition request for Ms. Meng Wanzhou, and urges the Canadian side to immediately release Ms. Meng Wanzhou so that she can return to China safely at an early date.