Beijing, June 29 (Xinhuanet.com, Liao Lei reporting) – During recent years, the CPC’s external contacts have become increasingly active and played a more and more important role. Shortly before the 84th anniversary of the founding of the CPC on July 1, a reporter from the Xinhua News Agency interviewed Wang Jiarui, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee.
Party-to-party contacts help lay the most solid and broadest political foundation for developing bilateral state relations
Reporter: Minister Wang, people in China and other countries are very much interested in the CPC’s external contacts. Would you please briefly discuss its current external work?
Wang: The Party’s external work is an important part of the Party’s cause and at the same time an indispensable aspect of the state’s overall diplomacy. Thanks to the correct leadership of the Party Central Committee and the active participation of concerned parties, the Party’s external work progresses with the times, breaks new ground, makes innovations, and has more varied forms and greater room for development. At present, the CPC maintains different kinds of friendly relations with over 400 political parties and organizations in more than 160 countries and regions the world over. By constantly strengthening their different forms of friendly contacts, the CPC and those political parties and organizations have gradually deepened their mutual understanding and increased their mutual political trust. As a result, China’s relations with the countries and regions where those political parties and organizations are located have also developed comprehensively. It can be said that the CPC has friends all over the world and that its external contacts have strongly supported the state’s overall diplomacy and made due contributions to China’s reform and opening up and its modernization drive as well as to world peace and development.
Reporter: Am I to understand that what you said just now means that deeper understanding and increased mutual trust is the primary objective of party-to-party contacts?
Wang: Exactly. We maintain extensive contacts with political parties, political organizations and politicians of various countries on the basis of the principles of independence, complete equality, mutual respect and noninterference in each other’s internal affairs. We exchange views in a sincere and deep-going way with them on questions of common interest and on how to run our parties and how to govern our countries. We discuss issues that we have similar understandings with them while not avoiding differences. In this way, the most solid and broadest political foundation for developing bilateral state relations is laid. Recently, Liu Qi, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, led a Party delegation on a visit to three Central Asian countries, and He Yong, Member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee, led another delegation on a visit to four European countries. These two visits were examples of the above-mentioned approach. The presidents and prime ministers of those countries and leaders of their main political parties met with the delegations separately, and the two sides conducted in-depth exchanges of views on how to develop bilateral relations and reached consensus on a wide range of issues. In the first half of this year, we received a number of important political party delegations, including one led by Raul Castro Ruz, Second Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba. The basic intention of these activities is to constantly push forward state-to-state relations through party-to-party contacts.
Party-to-party contacts help solve current regional and international issues of major concern
Reporter: I’ve noticed that although some difficulties have cropped up in Sino-Japanese relations, the contacts between the CPC and Japanese political parties still appear to be active. Why is that?
Wang: Recently, we received several Japanese political party delegations, including the ones led by Taku Yamasaki, assistant to the Prime Minister; Takebe Tsutomu and Fuyushiba Tetsuzo, secretaries-general of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and of the Komei Party respectively; Koichi Kato, former General Secretary of the Liberal Democratic Party; and Yoshito Sengoku, Policy Research Committee Chair of the Democratic Party. We believe that the more the difficulties and problems in bilateral relations, the more imperative it is for politicians of the two countries to engage in frank and sincere dialogue. Against this backdrop, it is especially important for the two sides to sit down together through the channel of party-to-party contacts to have intensive exchanges of views and jointly discuss ways to solve problems. This is why the CPC and Japanese political parties are maintaining close contacts at present. We hope that the two sides will make joint efforts to bring Sino-Japanese relations out of the present difficulties and develop them steadily.
Reporter: Last February, you led a delegation on a visit to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, which aroused great interest in the international community. What role do you think party-to-party contacts play in resolving current international issues of major concern?
Wang: The international community did pay great attention to my visit, and I was even hotly pursued by foreign journalists when I was leaving for my trip at the Capital International Airport in Beijing. An important objective of the CPC’s external contacts is to promote world peace, stability and development. To help resolve current international issues of major concern through party-to-party contacts has become part of our work. Last February, the CPC Central Committee appointed me to lead a delegation on a visit to the DPRK, and I carried an oral message from General Secretary Hu Jintao to General Secretary Kim Jong-il. I had the honor to have a talk with him for over four hours, in which I made China’s position on the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsular clear and the Korean side responded positively. At present, the international situation is complex and major problems constantly crop up. As part of the state’s overall diplomacy, Party diplomacy should adapt to the developing situation and help solve these problems. I can also tell you that to carry out deep-going exchanges and dialogues with political parties and politicians of other countries through party-to-party contacts and working with them hand in hand to help UN reforms develop in the correct direction is an important part of our work now.
The CPC actively participates in multilateral party-to-party contacts
Reporter: During the past few days my colleagues have been covering the delegation from multiple political parties of African countries visiting China for observation and study. What can you tell me about the CPC’s participation in multilateral party-to-party contacts?
Wang: Multilateral party-to-party contacts have become a new bright spot in the CPC’s external contacts. Last fall, the CPC successfully sponsored the Third International Conference of Asian Political Parties, during which representatives of the political parties of Asian countries gathered in Beijing to discuss how to ensure peace and stability in Asia and how to achieve prosperity and development there, thus forming a bridge of interaction and friendship between Asian political parties. In order to materialize the achievements of the conference and prepare for the next conference, a CPC delegation attended a meeting of the Standing Committee of the International Conference of Asian Political Parties in the Republic of Korea not long ago. Our delegation made suggestions concerning future exchanges and cooperation between Asian political parties which won the support of the other delegations. The CPC maintains friendly contacts with some international organizations of the world’s political parties. Recently we invited delegations of the Socialist International and party groups in the European Parliament to visit China and sent CPC representatives to participate in multilateral activities of international organizations of political parties. All this has won the Party more understanding and support for its policies and proposals in the multilateral arena. The African delegation you just mentioned consists of senior officials of the ruling parties of nine countries. Their visit to China is another example of the CPC’s successful efforts to strengthen its multilateral party-to-party contacts.
The CPC’s contacts with political parties of countries with no diplomatic relations with China help pave roads and build bridges leading to friendship
Reporter: We have noticed that in the first half of this year, your Department sent delegations to visit Haiti and Dominica, which do not have diplomatic ties with China. Could you elaborate on that?
Wang: The CPC maintains different kinds of relations with the main political parties of countries with no diplomatic ties with China. These contacts surmount the barrier of the absence of diplomatic relations and help build bridges that serve to increase contacts and understanding between us and the political parties, politicians and people in those countries. In the first half of this year, we sent delegations on friendly visits to Haiti and Dominica and received several delegations of political parties from countries with no diplomatic relations with China. These contacts helped these countries better understand us and helped us make more new friends. I think this part of our work is important because it helps pave roads and build bridges of friendship. We will further increase our friendly contacts with political parties in those countries to pave the road of friendship and build the bridge of friendship.
The international community is interested in the CPC’s Education Campaign to Preserve the Advanced Nature of Party Members
Reporter: In the first half of this year, the CPC carried out the Education Campaign to Preserve the Advanced Nature of Party Members. The international community is very much interested in that. What can you tell me about it?
Wang: The political parties, political organizations and politicians of various countries, no matter what their political beliefs are and whether they are in a ruling position, are very much interested in the CPC’s Education Campaign to Preserve the Advanced Nature of Party Members and believe that it is an important step the CPC is taking to strengthen its governance capacity. I often answer questions raised by our guests from foreign parties about that and deeply feel its broad international influence. My Department also carried out the campaign in the first half of this year in accordance with the unified requirements and plan of the CPC Central Committee. By earnestly carrying out the campaign, the Department’s functionaries engaging in external contacts have enhanced their sense of responsibility and sense of mission, and have become more enthusiastic and willing to enter a new phase in the Party’s external work. I am convinced that under the leadership of the Central Committee with Comrade Hu Jintao as General Secretary, the CPC’s external work will enter a new phase of vigorous development, and it’s external contacts will make new contributions to enabling China to secure a peaceful and stable international climate, friendly and good-neighborly relations with neighboring countries, a cooperative environment of equality and mutual benefit, and objective and friendly public opinion.