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China not a "threat" to UK, but a partner for cooperation
  ·  2021-03-18  ·   Source: Xinhua News Agency

China is not a "threat" or "systemic competitor" to Britain, but a partner for cooperation, Yang Xiaoguang, charge d'affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Britain, has said. 

Yang made the remarks during a live interview with Sky News on the night of March 16 after the British government published the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy earlier in the day.

In response to the question that China is seen in the review as the so-called "biggest state-based threat" to Britain's economic security, Yang said China is not a "threat" or "systemic competitor" to Britain, but a partner for cooperation.

"Differences in political and social systems should not prevent the two countries from cooperation. Major countries like China and the UK should not resort to confrontation," he said.

"China is not afraid of confrontation, but never provokes it," Yang said. "In the 21st century, cooperation is the only choice. Confronted with pressing issues such as COVID-19, climate change and energy security, there is no reason for major countries to give up on cooperation and seek confrontation."

On the question that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said China has different values to Britain's and presents challenges to Britain, its allies and "open society", Yang said that having a political system different from those of Western countries does not mean that China is a threat to others.

"The political system of a country must suit its historical and cultural traditions. China's current system suits herself best. China does not export its own model, nor will it copy others," Yang said.

"As the saying goes, one key opens one lock. China's goal for development is simple," he said. "Internally, it insists on focus on the people and strives to enable them to feel more satisfied. Externally, China is committed to building a community with a shared future for mankind and making a safer and better world. How could China be a threat?"

On Britain's plan to increase its nuclear arsenal, Yang said that China adheres to the principle of non-interference and would not comment on other countries' internal affairs.

"China has always been an advocate for the comprehensive prohibition and complete elimination of nuclear weapons...It is hoped that the UK's action could contribute to world peace and stability," he said.

On Britain's plan to send its new aircraft carrier to the "Indo-Pacific", Yang pointed out that there have been reports on the plan in China, which aroused wide antipathy and opposition among the Chinese people.

"Regional countries should be trusted to have enough wisdom to solve the existing disputes under the principle of mutual respect through political negotiations. There is no need for countries from outside the region to step in and muddle the water," he said.

"Some major countries try to sow disputes and call the region the Indo-Pacific instead of the Asia-Pacific. I wonder what they are driving at," Yang said.

The Asia-pacific is now the most populous and the most dynamic economy in the world and it is widely predicted that the 21st century is the Asia-Pacific century, Yang said.

"China, as one of the core regional members, stands ready to work with its neighbours to safeguard peace of the region. We hope the UK and other countries from outside of the region will conduct themselves in a way that is conducive to peace and stability of the region, not the opposite," he said.

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