BEIJING, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- In his speech at the General Debate of the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly in September 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping put forward the idea of "common values of humanity" for the first time to the world.
"Peace, development, equality, justice, democracy and freedom are common values of all humankind and the lofty goals of the United Nations," Xi said. "Yet these goals are far from being achieved; therefore we must continue our endeavors."
Envisioning a world where countries enjoy harmony in diversity and expand their common ground despite differences, China's promotion of common values of humanity contributes to the progress of human civilization.
This is in stark contrast to how some people in the West have packaged their lopsided understanding of the cherished values of humanity -- including democracy, freedom and equality -- into what they tout as "universal values" and tried to force them on others.
Their attempts to gauge the diverse political systems in the world with a single yardstick, impose one's own political system on others and instigate "color revolution" have caused political chaos and social unrest -- the Middle East being one visible example.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
The China-proposed common values of humanity is significant from a variety of viewpoints, including how the understanding of values by different civilizations and the explorations of different peoples to realize values should be treated.
"Despite differences among countries in history, culture, institution and level of development, their peoples do subscribe to the common values of humanity for peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom," said Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, at the CPC and World Political Parties Summit in July 2021.
"We need to champion the common values of humanity, foster broad-minded tolerance toward the understanding of values by different civilizations, and respect the explorations of different peoples to turn values into reality," he said.
Some people in the West are dividing the world by drawing ideological lines based on "universal values" and forming cliques and exclusive blocs while China is contributing to global unity by promoting the common values of humanity to expand common ground and the convergence of interests among people of different countries.
The common values of humanity championed by China do not mean conformity to a one-size-fits-all approach in countries' pursuit of values. On the contrary, it calls for a way of peaceful co-existence despite differences under which countries respect others' interests while pursuing their own, and advance common interests of all.
To promote the common values of humanity, the diversity of civilizations must be respected and different civilizations must be treated equally.
"No civilization is superior over others," Xi said at the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations in May 2019. "The thought that one's own race and civilization are superior and the inclination to remold or replace other civilizations are just stupid. To act them out will only bring catastrophic consequences."
"What we need is to respect each other as equals and say no to hubris and prejudice," Xi pointed out in the same speech. "We need to deepen understanding of the difference between one's own civilization and others', and work to promote interaction, dialogue and harmony among civilizations."
WALK THE TALK
China has walked the talk by contributing to the realization of the common values of humanity.
In safeguarding world peace, China is committed to the path of peaceful development and has actively participated in defusing major international and regional flashpoints and facilitated peaceful negotiations.
In advancing development, China believes that development is meaningful only when it is inclusive and sustainable, and has steadily helped developing countries enhance their capability to achieve self-sufficiency.
In championing equality, China has actively participated in the reform of the global governance system, and worked to make economic globalization more inclusive and balanced.
In promoting justice, China has firmly stood on the right side of international justice and upheld the common interests of developing countries.
In achieving democratic ethos, China has actively developed whole-process people's democracy and promoted greater democracy in international relations.
In protecting freedom, China has respected the rights of the people of all countries to choose their own development path through concrete actions and stayed committed to the full and free development of individuals.