Beijing, China â
Fri 4 June 2021
Speculation is rife that China may start to take a softer approach to other countries, including Japan, following President Xi Jinping’s pledge to “strive to shape a reliable image , admirable and respectable “of the country.
In recent years, the Communist-led government has taken a tough stance towards certain democratic nations regarding its alleged human rights violations against the Uyghur Muslim minority in Xinjiang and the security concerns facing Taiwan and its environs.
But Xi told a ruling party meeting that China should “expand the circle of friends who understand him,” the official said. Xinhua The news agency reported, days before Friday’s 32nd anniversary of the crackdown on democracy protests in Tiananmen Square.
At the rally held on Monday, Xi was also quoted by the news agency as stressing “the need to deeply understand how important and necessary it is to improve the country’s international communication.”
In order to achieve the goal, Xi “called for carrying out people-to-people exchanges” and “training competent professionals for international communication,” Xinhua said.
A diplomatic source in Beijing told Kyodo News that Xi’s remarks “can be translated as a sign that China will change its diplomatic stance on the road,” as its ties with many other countries have deteriorated amid tensions in China. -american have remained high.
China and the European Union have been at odds over the Xinjiang issue since the regional bloc, along with the United States, Britain and Canada, imposed coordinated sanctions on the Asian country earlier this year.
Relations between China and Australia have also deteriorated, particularly after Canberra requested an independent examination early last year into the origins of the novel coronavirus, first detected in the central city of Wuhan in China. end of 2019.
As for Japan, China has been irritated by its neighbor since Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga confirmed to US President Joe Biden during their summit in Washington in April “the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. “.
This is the first time in 52 years that Japanese and American leaders have mentioned Taiwan in a joint statement.
Immediately after the summit, China’s Foreign Ministry summoned a senior official from the Japanese Embassy in Beijing to protest the deal between the United States and its close security ally in Asia.
A Japanese scholar familiar with Sino-Japanese relations said, âTaiwan is a central interest of China, so Japan shouldn’t have talked about it at the summit with the United States, if it seriously thought about how. to come to an understanding with the Asian power. . “
In February, China also enforced a controversial law allowing its coast guard to use weapons when foreign ships involved in illegal activities in waters it claims were not obeying orders, already undermining Sino-relations. Japanese rules on maritime safety.
While China claims the Japan-administered Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea are part of its territory, fears are growing in Tokyo that the legislation will target Japanese ships sailing around uninhabited islets called Diaoyu in China.
China has frequently sent official ships into the waters around the Senkaku to assert its claim, while Washington and Tokyo have agreed that the islands fall under the scope of a Japan-US security treaty.
The source, however, said Xi realized that China could face “isolation” from the international community if it continues to conduct its aggressive “wolf warrior diplomacy”.
As relations with the United States have shown little sign of improvement since Biden took power in January, China may begin to extend an olive branch to some countries, given that diplomatic isolation ” would harm its political and economic interests “.
The Global Times, a tabloid affiliated with the Communist Party, said Wednesday: âChina is not a country that likes to promote itself to other nations, and it does not like to play tac-for-other and prefers to treat others with kindness. . “
In his country, China has indicated that it will focus on allaying public concerns about the future by implementing measures to narrow social and economic gaps, with the apparent aim of preventing a recurrence of ‘an incident similar to that of the Tiananmen protest.
The Chinese Communist Party has decided to allow married couples to have a third child, state media reported on Monday, as part of a major policy change to combat the negative effects of the low birth rate in the country. country.
China’s population is aging, in large part due to its “one-child policy” introduced in 1979. It was scrapped in 2016 amid fears that rapid population aging could hold back economic expansion .
Although the government has allowed all married couples to have a second child since then, China has not experienced a baby boom.
“To encourage Chinese couples to have a certain number of children, Xi’s leaders should fundamentally reform the country’s social security system and provide a safe environment for raising a family,” a source close to the Chinese government said.
“In China, young people even find it difficult to buy a house with constantly rising real estate prices, when they have to pay too much money to support the aging society. They have become frustrated with the Communist Party.” , the source said.
The latest change in China’s population policy highlights Xi’s eagerness to expand the country’s pension, health, and welfare systems, which would be welcomed by young citizens whether or not the birth rate rises. “, he added.