Shar­ing a great re­spon­si­bil­ity China, US are obliged to deepen co­op­er­a­tion and in­ten­sify ex­changes to build a new model of ma­jor- coun­try re­la­tions

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT - SHEN DINGLI The au­thor is a pro­fes­sor at and as­so­ci­ate dean of the In­sti­tute of In­ter­na­tional Stud­ies in Shang­hai’s Fu­dan Univer­sity.

Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping and US Vice-Pres­i­dent Joe Bi­den have agreed that China and the United States should strengthen di­a­logue and co­op­er­a­tion to build a new model of ma­jor-coun­try re­la­tions. Dur­ing Bi­den’s just con­cluded two-day visit to China, the two lead­ers also ex­changed in-depth views on a range of in­ter­na­tional and re­gional is­sues of com­mon con­cern.

Sino-US re­la­tions are mov­ing in di­rec­tion out­lined by Pres­i­dent Xi and US Pres­i­dent Barack Obama dur­ing their sum­mit at Sun­ny­lands, Cal­i­for­nia, ear­lier this year. With agree­ments on sev­eral fronts, a round of Strate­gic and Eco­nomic Di­a­logue and a se­ries of bi­lat­eral cul­tural ex­changes, Sino-US re­la­tions have made re­mark­able progress. New Sino-US work­ing groups on cli­mate change and cy­ber­se­cu­rity have be­come op­er­a­tional, and the two sides have launched a new co­op­er­a­tion mech­a­nism in mil­i­tary mat­ters, which for long has been a sen­si­tive is­sue in Sino-US ties.

De­spite the ex­is­tence of nu­mer­ous dis­agree­ments and dis­putes, China and the US have de­clared that they would not en­gage in di­rect con­fronta­tions or con­flicts with each other. Such shared as­pi­ra­tions have laid a solid foun­da­tion for the two sides to en­hance mu­tual trust and main­tain sta­bil­ity in the Asi­aPa­cific re­gion in the era of China’s peace­ful rise.

The meet­ing that the two coun­tries’ pres­i­dents held soon af­ter they took of­fice (Obama for the sec­ond term) cre­ated con­di­tions for strength­en­ing in­ter­per­sonal trust. Dur­ing their Sun­ny­lands sum­mit in June, Xi and Obama dis­cussed a se­ries of bi­lat­eral, re­gional and global is­sues of com­mon con­cern in an ami­able man­ner.

The high-level bond that de­vel­oped at the sum­mit has helped build closer links be­tween the two coun­tries, and prompted them to pay greater at­ten­tion to each other’s do­mes­tic de­vel­op­ment. For ex­am­ple, the US has fol­lowed with keen in­ter­est China’s re­form and de­vel­op­ment pro­gram mapped out by the Third Ple­nary Ses­sion of the Com­mu­nist Party of China’s 18th Cen­tral Com­mit­tee in Novem­ber.

As US vice-pres­i­dent, Bi­den has played a key role in the mak­ing of US poli­cies to­ward China since Obama’s first term as US pres­i­dent. Of the view that China’s de­vel­op­ment will ben­e­fit Sino-US re­la­tions, Bi­den has made great ef­forts for the de­vel­op­ment of bi­lat­eral ties, draw­ing praise from many quar­ters. Bi­den has helped the US pres­i­dent ex­change vis­its with his Chi­nese coun­ter­part. The ex­change of high­level vis­its has helped deepen mu­tual trust be­tween the top lead­ers of the two coun­tries. Also, Bi­den has vig­or­ously pushed for the ex­change of vis­its be­tween the two coun­tries’ vice-pres­i­dents.

At the talks dur­ing Bi­den’s lat­est visit to China, the two sides also ex­changed views on China’s newly de­mar­cated Air De­fense Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion Zone over the East China Sea, hold­ing timely high-level com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween the two coun­tries. The ADIZ is an im­por­tant step for China to­ward safe­guard­ing its

As re­spon­si­ble pow­ers, China and the US need to deepen co­op­er­a­tion in their pur­suit of re­gional and global sta­bil­ity. They share the re­spon­si­bil­ity of deep­en­ing co­op­er­a­tion.

na­tional se­cu­rity and sovereignty in the East China Sea, es­pe­cially in the changed re­gional and in­ter­na­tional sit­u­a­tions.

In the last cen­tury, China’s sovereignty was com­pro­mised be­cause of in­va­sions into and oc­cu­pa­tion of its ter­ri­to­ries by some im­pe­ri­al­ist pow­ers. De­spite Tai­wan’s re­turn to the moth­er­land af­ter the end of World War II, China has not been able to re­al­ize the re­union across the Straits ow­ing to con­tin­u­ous US med­dling in its in­ter­nal af­fairs. To the detri­ment of China’s sovereignty, the US even trans­ferred the ad­min­is­tra­tion over the Diaoyu Is­lands, an in­te­gral part of China’s ter­ri­tory, to Ja­pan. The es­tab­lish­ment of an ADIZ by Ja­pan cov­er­ing the Diaoyu Is­lands 44 years ago and the “na­tion­al­iza­tion” of some of the is­lands by Tokyo last year are fur­ther in­fringe­ments upon China’s sovereignty, which have wors­ened the se­cu­rity con­di­tions in the East China Sea.

Against this back­drop, the es­tab­lish­ment of an ADIZ by China is a le­git­i­mate mea­sure to main­tain its air and mar­itime se­cu­rity. In no way does it sug­gest that China in­tends to ex­pand its ter­ri­to­rial air space. The stip­u­la­tion that for­eign air­craft en­ter­ing the ADIZ must no­tify China of their flight plans does not ham­per their free­dom of flight through the zone in ac­cor­dance with in­ter­na­tional laws.

China has been pur­su­ing its de­vel­op­ment in ac­cor­dance with the ex­tant frame­work of in­ter­na­tional laws. Be­sides, its fast-paced de­vel­op­ment is the re­sult of long-term and mu­tu­ally ben­e­fi­cial co­op­er­a­tion with the US. The ADIZ, too, is a US in­ven­tion; China is only fol­low­ing in­ter­na­tional prac­tices to safe­guard its sovereignty. It is more than clear to­day that China and the US will ben­e­fit from co­op­er­a­tion and suf­fer from con­fronta­tion.

As re­spon­si­ble pow­ers, China and the US need to deepen co­op­er­a­tion in their pur­suit of re­gional and global sta­bil­ity. They share the re­spon­si­bil­ity of deep­en­ing co­op­er­a­tion and in­ten­si­fy­ing ex­changes in an era of trans­form­ing global pat­terns in or­der to build a new type of ma­jor-power re­la­tion­ship.

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