Unswervingly Hold High the Banner of Multilateralism

Chinese Ambassador to Liberia, Ren Yisheng  

By Ambassador Ren Yisheng on the 50th anniversary of the restoration of China's legitimate seat in the United Nations

On October 25, 1971, the 26th UN General Assembly passed a resolution restoring the legitimate seat of the People's Republic of China. The return of China as a large country, which accounts for nearly a quarter of the world's population, to the UN family has made the UN truly universal.

Over the past 50 years, China has actively participated in the activities of the UN in various fields, firmly upholding the international system with the UN as the core, the international order based on international law, and the core role of the UN in international affairs. Today, China has joined almost all intergovernmental international organizations and more than 500 international conventions. It is the second largest contributor to the UN and peacekeeping, and it is the country with the largest number of peacekeepers among the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council. Chinese concepts and Chinese solutions are getting more and more popular. The "Belt and Road" initiative, the concept of "building a community with a shared future for mankind", and the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits have been included in UN documents many times.

Multilateralism has always been China's firm choice. China believes that true multilateralism should abide by the principles of the UN Charter, safeguard the international system with the UN at its core, and promote the democratization of international relations. We must persist in openness and inclusiveness, and refrain from isolation and exclusiveness; persist in consultation on an equal footing and refrain from assuming air of self-importance.

China's return to the UN has greatly strengthened the influence of developing countries in the international governance system. China is the largest developing country in the world and the only developing country among the five permanent members of the Security Council. Over the past 50 years, China has actively participated in the reform and construction of the global governance system, and has continuously promoted the development of the global governance system in a more just and reasonable direction. China is willing to provide new opportunities for the world with its own new development and to inject new impetus into the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. President Xi Jinping put forward the "Global Development Initiative" in this year's General Debate of the General Assembly, which captures the major and urgent issues facing the world today and reflects the common expectations of the international community, especially the developing countries.

Fifty years have passed, and both China and the UN are facing unprecedented challenges. China and the UN are both constructive and stable forces in tackling global issues such as climate change and public health, reshaping the international order and global governance system, and advancing the sustainable peace and sustainable development agenda. In the future, China will continue to deepen cooperation with the UN and be a firm supporter, defender, and participant in the cause of the UN and multilateralism. China will work with other countries to uphold the common values of peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy, and freedom for all mankind, promote the construction of a new type of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind, and jointly create a better future for the world.

African countries have made great contributions to China's restoration of its legitimate seat in the United Nations. Among the votes for the restoring, one-third of the yes votes came from Africa. Chairman Mao Zedong commended that "It is African brothers who carried us into the UN", which vividly reflects the profound friendship between China and Africa, and also reflects that China's return to the UN is the popular hope of the majority of developing countries.

For 50 years, China and Africa have supported each other in international affairs. China defeated anti-China proposals at the UN Commission on Human Rights for 11 times, and defeated Taiwan's "return to the United Nations" attempt at the UN General Assembly for 13 times, both of which have won strong support from African countries. At the same time, China earnestly fulfills its responsibilities as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, and continuously strengthens communication and coordination with African countries in the UN Security Council, and actively participates in peace and security affairs in Africa by keeping with the principle of upholding justice while pursuing shared interests and the principle of sincerity, real results, affinity and good faith, as proposed by President Xi Jinping. More than 80% of the peacekeepers sent by China are deployed in Africa, and 75% of the peacekeeping contributions are used in Africa. From 2003 to 2017, China sent more than 10,000 peacekeeping soldiers to Liberia, and dispatched many batches of peacekeeping riot police brigades, making important contributions to the post-war peace rebuilding in Liberia.

China has always upheld fairness and justice in the UN, insisted that all countries, large and small, are equal, and stood firmly with developing countries. China believes that the representation and voice of developing countries in the United Nations should be increased to more reflect the common aspirations of most countries. China actively promotes the international community to attach importance to peace and development in Africa, and supports African countries to participate in international affairs on an equal footing. On the issue of UN reform, China supports giving priority to increasing the representation of developing countries, especially African countries, in the Security Council. In the face of the sudden Covid-19 epidemic, President Xi Jinping, in his speech at the opening ceremony of the 73rd World Health Assembly video conference in 2020, emphasized particularly the need to increase support for African countries. President Xi has repeatedly reiterated that China will make the Covid-19 vaccine a global public product.

Over the past 50 years, China and African countries have understood, supported and helped each other, and have become all-weather good friends, sincere cooperation partners, and true brothers. China-Africa cooperation is increasingly merging into the more global "Belt and Road" international cooperation initiative. No matter how the international and regional situation develops and evolves, no matter what irresponsible remarks some countries make , China's determination to implement the important consensus of the Chinese and African leaders will not change, its efforts to maintain peace and stability in Africa will not change, and its participation in the peaceful development of Africa will not change. I believe that with the joint efforts of both sides, China-Africa relations will develop better and better, and China-Africa cooperation will continue to make new progress and reach new heights.