Countries should shoulder responsibilities, promote solidarity, cooperation to fight Covid-19

By Zhong Sheng
To win the battle against the Covid-19 pandemic calls for joint action of mankind. China’s State Council Information Office recently released a white paper titled “Fighting Covid-19: China in Action”, calling on all countries to act promptly, demonstrate solidarity, strengthen cooperation on all fronts, and fight the pandemic together.
China will always uphold the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind and shoulder its responsibility as a major country, to contribute Chinese strength and wisdom to the building of a global community of health for all and make unremitted efforts to forge a powerful synergy against the epidemic. China’s ideas, proposals and actions on the global battle have won wide respect and high recognition from the international society.
Upholding science and rationality, strengthening unity and cooperation, and promote multilateral coordination, China has fully demonstrated its sense of justice in the battle against the Covid-19 epidemic. In phone calls or meetings with foreign leaders and heads of international organizations, Chinese President Xi Jinping explained China’s tactics and achievements in fighting the virus, and emphasized China’s open, transparent and responsible approach towards releasing information and sharing its experience in virus control and the treatment of infected cases. He expressed empathy for the difficulties faced by other countries, saying that China would do all it can to help them. He called on all parties to build a global community of shared future, strengthen bilateral and multilateral cooperation, and support international organizations in order to work together to meet the challenge.
President Xi delivered a speech at the G20 Extraordinary Leaders’ Summit on Covid-19 on China’s experience. In a call on the international community to rise to the challenge and act swiftly, he put forward a series of cooperation initiatives and four key proposals – launch an all-out global war against Covid-19, establish a collective response for control and treatment at the international level, support international organizations in playing their roles, and strengthen coordination of international macroeconomic policies. He has injected important energy into promoting global anti-epidemic cooperation and boosting market confidence.
On May 18, he addressed the opening of the 73rd World Health Assembly. Raising a series of important initiatives on the height of building a global community of health for all and announcing a package of major measures to be rolled out by China to support the global battle, he fully demonstrated China’s sense of responsibility as a major country.
Bounkong Syhavong, Minister of Health of Laos remarked that by practicing the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind with concrete actions, China has showcased its cooperation spirit to jointly seek common welfare for mankind.
China has shared information and experience with the international community, provided humanitarian assistance to the international community, tried every possible means to provide support to all countries in purchasing protective materials, and carried out international exchanges and cooperation on scientific research. It has shared diagnosis, treatment, prevention and control solutions with over 180 countries and more than 10 international and regional organizations. As of May 31, China had sent 29 medical expert teams to 27 countries, and offered assistance to 150 countries and 4 international organizations. From March 1 to May 31, China exported protective materials to 200 countries and regions, among which there were more than 70.6 billion masks, 340 million protective suits.
The country has always acted responsibly when the world is in need of mutual assistance. A foreign dignitary commented that the huge efforts made by China to reinforce global pandemic response are obvious to all and have injected confidence and strength to other countries’ battle against the virus. Such evaluation reflected the high recognition of the international society on China’s contribution.
In this major public health crisis, we should not manufacture political disputes, seek isolation, pursue unilateralism, or destabilize the foundation for multilateralism. All countries must act responsibly to promote solidarity for the common interests of mankind. Unfortunately, some politicians in certain countries are paying no respect to facts and science, in an attempt to politicize the disease and stigmatize China. Indeed, they aim at diverting public attention and ducking responsibilities. It must be made clear that China is a victim of the virus, and also a contributor to the global fight against the virus. It shall be treated fairly rather than with accusations. China firmly opposes the slandering and rumors related with Covid-19, as it safeguards facts and acts with a keen sense of responsibility for lives, the world and history.
China calls on the international community to draw lessons from this pandemic, reflect carefully, and turn crises into opportunities. Countries should show extraordinary political vision and a strong sense of responsibility by doing the following: embracing a philosophy that puts life above everything else, regards the world as a whole, and stresses equality, mutual respect, cooperation and mutual assistance; establishing sound mechanisms for international cooperation, including a long-term financing mechanism, a monitoring, early warning and joint response mechanism for threats to public health, and a mechanism for reserving and allocating resources; creating an efficient and sustainable global public health system for all; fortifying defenses for the lives and health of all; and building a global community of health for all. It is universally recognized that China’s proposals will enable the world to learn lessons and remedy weaknesses, and minimize both the imminent and potential threats of the virus.
President Xi pointed out that mankind is a community with a shared future. Solidarity and cooperation are the most powerful weapons available for the international community to defeat the pandemic which concerns the safety of people in all countries. Preventing and controlling the spread of the virus has become a fight to safeguard global public health, to secure the wellbeing of humanity, to maintain world prosperity, and to enforce morality and conscience on the international community. It calls for the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind, as well as cooperation and solidarity.
Facing the common enemy of mankind, countries should make practical actions, shoulder responsibilities and fight the virus. Solidarity means strength, the white paper stressed, and the world will win this battle.
(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People’s Daily to express its views on foreign policy.)