On June 5, 2019, President Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin of Russia signed and issued a joint statement on strengthening contemporary global strategic stability between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation. Recently, Assistant Foreign Minister Zhang Jun published a signed article in Chinese and Russian on Interfax and Sputnik News Agency of Russia under the title of “Working Together to Maintain Global Strategic Stability and Promote World Peace and Development”. The article expounds on the significance of the statement for demonstrating China-Russia strategic mutual trust and coordination and the image of China and Russia as responsible major countries, and introduces the two countries’ stance and propositions on adhering to multilateralism, maintaining global strategic stability and advancing global governance. The full text of the article is as follows:
Working Together to Maintain Global Strategic Stability and Promote World Peace and Development
From June 5 to 7, during President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Russia and attendance at the 23rd St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, leaders of the two countries signed and issued a joint statement on strengthening contemporary global strategic stability between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation. This was the second time since 2016 that the two heads of state have voiced a common stance on global strategic stability, which is of great practical significance and far-reaching strategic significance.
At present, uncertainties and instabilities in the international situation continue to increase. Some individual powers pursue unilateralism and bullying, causing a series of consequences. The world is seeing impacted international strategic stability, eroded multilateral system, escalating tensions in regional hotspot issues, and emerging new security challenges. Faced with unprecedented challenges, the leaders of China and Russia jointly issued a statement, not only charting the course for China and Russia to further strengthen strategic coordination in the new historical period, but also bringing confidence to this world full of uncertainties.
China and Russia demonstrate a responsible attitude of maintaining global strategic stability. Bilateral disarmament treaty system between Russia and the United States (US) that has been formed over the past few decades is an important part of the global security system. Regrettably, the Treaty on the Limitation of Anti-Ballistic Missile Systems became history; the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (the INF Treaty) exists in name only; and the future of the Treaty between the United States of America and the Russian Federation on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (the New START Treaty) looks grim. Still worse, some individual powers have blatantly included enhancement of the development of nuclear missiles and preparations for the restoration of nuclear tests into national security strategies, thus increasing the risk of nuclear arms race again.
Amid the new situation, China and Russia stressed in the statement that the nuclear-weapon states should abandon the Cold War mentality and the zero-sum game mindset, stop unrestricted development of the global anti-missile system, reduce the role of nuclear weapons in national security policies, and effectively reduce the nuclear war threats. The two sides reiterated that international legal documents and international consensus in the field of nuclear disarmament should be observed, and the parties to the relevant treaties should strive to restore the vitality of the INF Treaty and extend the New START Treaty. Undoubtedly, China and Russia’s commitment to maintaining global strategic stability with a clear-cut attitude is conducive to resisting the wrong practices of some individual powers seeking absolute security, and promoting major countries to enhance strategic mutual trust and fulfill international security obligations.
China and Russia show strong support for multilateralism. In the era of globalization, no country can cope with global challenges on its own, nor can any country achieve absolute security in self-isolation. Adherence to multilateralism or laissez-faire towards unilateralism has a bearing on the future development of each country and the future of all mankind. Some individual powers, out of their geopolitical considerations and own interest, have continually withdrawn treaties and groups, pursued unilateralism and hegemony, abused unilateral sanctions, and even used state power to suppress technology companies in other countries. These irresponsible unilateral acts have seriously affected the international order, undermined the international arms control system and endangered global peace and security.
In the face of challenges and pressures, China and Russia demonstrate their support for multilateralism with practical actions. The two countries expressed in the statement that they will work together to promote multilateralism, support the United Nations (UN) and the multilateral disarmament regime in playing a core role in the international arms control process, and safeguard and strengthen the multilateral arms control treaties such as the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty and the Biological Weapons Convention, in a bid to consolidate the international arms control and non-proliferation system. Under the current situation, China and Russia, the two major countries, firmly defend multilateralism, which is conducive to containing the spread of unilateralism, safeguarding the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and guaranteeing the legitimate security interests of each country through international cooperation.
China and Russia demonstrate their firm determination to promote political settlement of regional hotspot issues. At present, international and regional security hotspot issues are on the rise, affecting international and regional peace and security. For geopolitical purposes, some individual countries insist on extreme pressure, seek military coercion and intervention, wantonly wield the big stick of sanctions and aggravate the inherent contradictions, leading to delays and difficulties in addressing relevant issues. The recent dramatic deterioration of the situation of the Iranian nuclear issue has once again become a prominent issue affecting regional peace and stability.
China and Russia have always been important forces in promoting political settlement of regional hotspot issues. In the statement, the two sides reaffirmed the maintenance of the resolutions of the UN Security Council and the UN Charter, opposed unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction, and called on all parties to continue to fully implement the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on the Iranian nuclear issue, and properly resolve the Syrian chemical weapon dispute under the framework of the Chemical Weapons Convention. China and Russia firmly advance the process of political and diplomatic settlement of regional hotspot issues, which is conducive to safeguarding international fairness and justice, advocating replacement of confrontation with cooperation and coercion with consultation, maintaining the authority of the UN and the UN Security Council, and promoting international and regional peace and stability.
China and Russia showcase their active willingness to cope with new security challenges. The progressing times and the rapid development in the innovation in science and technology have vigorously boosted the social and economic development of various countries, making our life better than ever before. However, the development in science and technology is a double-edged sword. Military application of emerging technologies in such fields as outer space, network and artificial intelligence is exerting severe influences that must be properly dealt with. Some individual countries abuse the gaps in the international rules, keep on seeking new military advantages and bring about new confrontation, which means new threats to international peace and security.
In the statement, China and Russia insist on enhancing preventive diplomacy, concluding international legally binding documents on negotiations on the prevention of weaponization of outer space and arms race, as well as taking the UN as a platform to carry out research on the possible influence of scientific development on international security and its legal norms. These efforts will ensure the equal participation of various parties and embody the foresight and sagacity of leaders of China and Russia being responsible for the mankind as a whole and the next generation. China and Russia advocate coping with new security challenges through cooperation, which will advance the peaceful use of new technology as well as strengthen international cooperation and governance in the new territory of security.
At present, the situation of international security and global strategy stability is standing at a crucial crossroad. China and Russia’s role as the “stability anchor” in safeguarding world peace and security and boosting common development conforms to the common interests of the two countries as well as the shared expectations of the international community. China and Russia are on the side of justice. No matter how the situation will evolve, peace and development are always the trend of the times and the will of the people. We have every reason to be fully confident in the world and the future