On December 1st, 2016, H.E. Dr. Yue Xiaoyong, the Chinese Ambassador to Ireland, delivered a public lecture entitled “China’s Foreign Policies” for the 33rd Confucius PhD Students Forum of University College Dublin (UCD) as well as Confucius Public Lecture Series. More than 120 staff and students from UCD attended the inspiring lecture. Guest of honour from the Chinese Embassy also included Prof. Xiaochuang Wu, the First Secretary in charge of Education Section, Mr. Xiongwen Pan, Head of Political & Press Section as well as Mr. Yang Wei, the Attaché at Political & Press Section.
The Forum was co-hosted by UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland and UCD Chinese Students and Scholars’ Association (UCD CSSA). Prof. Liming Wang, Director of UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland (UCD CII) and honorary President of the Confucius PhD Students’ Forum opened the event. Prof. Wang said in his opening address that the Forum has become an important platform for cross-disciplinary and innovative exchanges since its inception in 2008. Dr Yue Xiaoyong is the first ever ambassador to deliver a lecture at the Forum though many well-known scholars had spoken at the Forum previously. His Excellency Yue Xiaoyong thanked the UCD CII for their invitation and was delighted to share his thoughts with the staff and students at UCD.
Ambassador Yue’s analysis of China’s diplomatic strategies was delivered with well supported evidence. His talk covered China’s views on the global situation, China’s peaceful development diplomatic strategies, China’s foreign policy bottom-line thinking, and China’s advocacy on maintaining international order with the UN at its core. The Ambassador’s humorous speech was well received by the audience.
While talking about China’s views on international order, Ambassador Yue advised that one should always put the avoidance of war as the top priority. He used the late Cuban leader Fidel Castro as an example - the Cuban missile crisis taught all of us a lesson: it’s better to pursue a path of peace than confrontation. China’s reform and opening-up policy is based on the peaceful development of the world. It has reached consensus that all countries should enhance collaboration in order to deal with humanitarian issues and disputes under current economic globalization. More and more countries have been engaged in international affairs with an equality and mutually beneficial approach over a long peaceful period of the world. The development of ICT empowers more frequent communications among peoples as well as countries. In the foreseeable future China will focus on the prevention of regional conflicts as well as its own social and economic development. China will maintain a path of peaceful development and endeavor to keep international peace and stability in order to create more positive conditions for its development. The ground rule for this development is mutual respect for each other’s interests and bottom lines.
At the end of his speech, Ambassador Yue stressed that China sticks to the policy of maintaining international order with the UN as the core, and the policy of equality and mutual respect. As a large country with massive responsibilities, China works with other countries toward a peaceful, stable and prosperous world. Ambassador Yue answered all the questions from the highly interested students at the Q & A session. The 33rd Confucius PhD Students Forum and UCD Confucius Institute Lecture Series ended with thundering applause from the audience for Ambassador Yue’s speech.