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Wang Yi, Chinese FM explains 3 decades tradition of starting year’s diplomatic trips with Africa

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China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi, proud that FOCAC now defines pace on how the world relates with Africa Photo by Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images)

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   HARARE, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Sunday there are three reasons for Africa being the destination of all Chinese foreign ministers' first overseas visit each year over the past three decades.
   Speaking at a press conference with Zimbabwe's Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Sibusiso Moyo in Harare, Wang said the tradition is a unique practice in international diplomacy and China has been staying true to its original aspiration.
   First of all, this is based on the special feelings of friendship from generation to generation and sharing weal and woe between China and Africa, Wang said.
   China-Africa friendship has a long history, the foreign minister noted. Especially in modern times, the two sides fought together for national independence and liberation, shared weal and woe, supported each other, formed a brotherly friendship, and became each other's trusted good friend, he said.
   "In the period of development and construction, we joined together again and made progress hand in hand, and became good partners for mutual benefit and win-win progress," he said.
   Wang said that for decades, no matter how the international circumstances have changed, the friendship between China and Africa has become even stronger, and the torch has been handed down on and on. China-Africa relations have stood the test of time, eliminated disturbances, and become a model for international relations and South-South cooperation, he added.
   Second, Wang said, the tradition is based on the realistic needs of deepening cooperation and common development between China and Africa.
   China is the largest developing country, and Africa is the continent where most developing countries are concentrated. "We are natural partners with complementary advantages and have unlimited cooperation space and potential," Wang said.
   In recent years, the achievements of China-Africa cooperation include the establishment of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, reaching consensus on building a community with a shared future, the joint construction of the Belt and Road, and China-Africa pilot projects for production capacity cooperation, all of which have brought ground-breaking influence on China-Africa relations, and helped bring China-Africa cooperation into a new era, he said.
   China is full of confidence in the prospects of Africa's development and the future of China-Africa cooperation, and will push China-Africa cooperation to the frontline of international cooperation with Africa.
   The third reason, said Wang, is the important mission of strengthening international cooperation and safeguarding common interests between China and Africa.
   The world is becoming less peaceful especially in recent years, as unilateralism and power politics have prevailed and the Cold War mentality has resurged, Wang noted, adding that developing countries, including African nations, have suffered greatly from this.
   There is an urgent need to strengthen communication and coordination between China and Africa, demonstrate the power of solidarity and make a joint voice in order to safeguard the legitimate rights of the Chinese and African people to oppose external interference, pursue fairness and justice, and lead a better life
XINHUA

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