BEIJING, July 31, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The Chengdu Universiade officially kicked off Friday night in the capital city of southwest China’s Sichuan Province, known as the hometown of giant pandas and one of the most vibrant Chinese cities.
Ahead the opening ceremony of the 31st summer edition of the FISU World University Games, Chinese President Xi Jinping has engaged himself in a flurry of face-to-face high-level meetings with foreign leaders attending the ceremony over the past couple of days.
Behind the tight diplomatic schedule, Xi has highlighted the importance of solidarity, cooperation and the building of a community with a shared future for mankind, three key messages shared by the visiting leaders of Indonesia, Guyana, Georgia, Mauritania and Burundi.
In a toast at a welcoming banquet on Friday noon, Xi said the Games, since its inception, has always been “a celebration of youth, solidarity, and friendship.”
“We should promote solidarity through sports, build up positive energy across the international community, join hands to tackle global challenges such as climate change, food crisis and terrorism, and shape a better future through cooperation,” he urged.
Solidarity, unity and togetherness were also one of the hot topics during the Chinese president’s separate meetings with Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Guyanese President Irfaan Ali, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Cheikh Ghazouani and Burundian President Evariste Ndayishimiye.
During the meeting with the Burundian leader, for instance, Xi stressed the importance of solidarity between China and Africa in safeguarding the common interests of developing countries and the international fairness and justice.
During the meetings of the leaders, China and the five countries agreed to further cooperation, such as on trade, infrastructure and people-to-people exchanges.
In a meeting with Xi on Thursday, Widodo said Indonesia is willing to continue to enhance cooperation with China in areas including investment, marine fisheries, food security and healthcare. The leaders witnessed the signing of bilateral cooperation documents following the meeting.
China and Georgia will issue a joint statement and announce the establishment of strategic partnership during Garibashvili’s historic visit. Xi hailed the remarkable achievements in cooperation in various fields between the two countries over the past 31 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations, while the Georgian prime minister said the elevation of bilateral relations will bring more opportunities to his country.
On Friday, China and Mauritania also signed a cooperation plan on jointly building the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to enhance bilateral ties.
A community with a shared future for mankind
The term of building a community with a shared future for mankind was repeatedly highlighted during the leaders’ meetings, with Indonesia, Guyana, Georgia, Mauritania and Burundi also expressing support for China-proposed initiatives.
While meeting with Xi on Friday afternoon, Ghazouani said Mauritania supports the BRI, the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative and the Global Civilization Initiative, saying that these initiatives are in line with the norms governing international relations that respect countries’ independence and sovereignty and exchanges between different civilizations.
Addressing the welcoming banquet, Xi stressed the importance of deepening exchanges and mutual learning to promote harmony without uniformity in the spirit of inclusiveness and seeing different cultures with an attitude of mutual appreciation and mutual learning.
“The Chengdu Games should be an opportunity for us to champion the common values of humanity and write a new chapter in building a community with a shared future for mankind,” said Xi.
In an interview with CGTN, Ali, the Guyanese president, said the Games goes beyond the competitions among the young athletes.
“They can share the experiences, they can share culture, [and] they can share who they are in building a stronger family of humanity,” he said.