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Chinese Diplomat Held Discussions with Faculty and Students of Merton College
2008/11/17

Councilor Liu Weimin went to Oxford's Merton College and held a discussion with students and faculty of Bodley Club on China's foreign policy. Jessica Rawson, Dean of Merton College and over thirty students were present.

Liu first introduced China's efforts to work with the international community in coping with the world financial crisis. He said that China had never felt so close and relevant with the world in face of crisis, which fully showed that China had become increasingly interdependent and interactive with the world in its 30 years of reform and opening-up. As a rapidly developing country and a responsible member of the international community, China would continue to strengthen its coordination with the world, sharing woe and woo and playing a positive role in stabilizing world financial and economic situation. At present it was most important for China to mend its own house and keep economic and financial stabilization, which was in itself a big contribution to the world.

Liu said that China's active participation in coping with the world financial crisis fully showed that China's diplomacy was becoming more active. Chinese leaders visited the world. Chinese diplomats were more often seen at the world stage. Chinese "Blue Helmets" went to conflict regions. Chinese companies were also going abroad. The core of China's diplomacy was peace and cooperation, having friendly relations with the world on the basis of equal cooperation, mutual respect, mutual benefit and win-win. The Beijing Olympic Games was both a sports and diplomatic feast and brought China's integration with the world up to a new high.

Liu went on to say that China's diplomacy was consisted of 4 pillars, i.e. relations with big powers, relations with neighbors, relations with developing countries and multilateral cooperation. It was fruitful in all four areas. He introduced China's foreign policy and practice on climate change, poverty reduction in Africa and peace keeping in Darfur.

Liu said that young students were active and creative. They were important force to promote Sino-UK relations. The Embassy was ready to further strengthen its exchange with Oxford University and introduce China to more students.

Mrs. Rawson appreciated the Chinese diplomat's active engagement and exchange with the students. She said that many British people still ignored the less developed side of China as its economy was rapidly growing and international status enhancing. She hoped that both sides could enhance comprehensive understanding through direct contacts. She also hoped that Merton students could gain more knowledge of China's domestic and foreign policy through all chances.

David Hunt, Chairman of Bodley Club said that Merton students lacked understanding of China despite big interest there. Face-to-face discussion with Chinese diplomat could improve their objective knowledge of China. Many students said that they would find chance to experience China's tradition and modernity in person.

Bodley Club is the student society in Merton College. It was funded in 1894 and named after Sir Bodley, founder of Bodley Library. Merton College, the oldest college at Oxford, was funded in 1294.

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