China commemorates the Lugou Bridge Incident, stresses peaceful development

Li Jiayao
2024-07-08 00:49:18

July 7 marks the 87th anniversary of the Lugou Bridge Incident, also known as the July 7th Incident of 1937, a pivotal event in Chinese history that ignited Japan's full-scale invasion of China during World War II. Commemorative activities are held across the country to mark the day and reaffirm China's steadfast commitment to peaceful development.

In northeast China's Shenyang, citizens paid tribute to fallen heroes by laying flowers at a monument standing tall in front of the September 18th Historical Museum, where over 2,400 documents and relics are displayed, showcasing the history of the Chinese people's struggle against the Japanese invasion.

In Hegang City, northeastern China's Heilongjiang Province, members of the Communist Party of China visit the Museum of the Northeast Anti-Japanese United Army, July 7, 2024. /CMG                

In Hegang City, northeastern China's Heilongjiang Province, members of the Communist Party of China visited the Museum of the Northeast Anti-Japanese United Army. The museum displayed thousands of war relics, including those of a prominent anti-Japanese general who was martyred during the war against Japanese invaders. Officials say the visit aims to honor anti-Japanese heroes and inspire new generations to uphold the spirit of resilience and patriotism.

The War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression lasted from 1931 to 1945. The war brought immense suffering and devastation to the Chinese people. Official data shows that more than 35 million Chinese soldiers and civilians died during the war, accounting for nearly 8 percent of China's total population in 1928.

On July 7, 1937, Japanese soldiers attacked Chinese forces at the Lugou Bridge, also known as Marco Polo Bridge, southwest of Peiping (today's Beijing). It was a crucial access point to the strategic city. The incident marks the start of China's whole-nation resistance against the Japanese invaders. Peiping was captured by the Japanese army on July 29, 1937. Data shows that more than 10,000 civilians were killed or disappeared during the fall of the city.

Commemorating events every year in China majorly serve as solemn reminders of the horrors of war and the enduring importance of peace.

In the decades, China has embarked on a path of peaceful development, striving to build a stable and prosperous society while fostering amicable relationships with nations around the world.

The museum displays thousands of war relics, including those of a prominent anti-Japanese general, who was martyred during the war against Japanese invaders, July 7, 2024. /CMG                

China recently convened a conference to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence in Beijing, which brought together leaders and representatives from around the world to reinforce these foundational principles and advance a more just and equitable international order. The meeting also highlighted China's role as a promoter of peace and stability on the global stage.

The five principles namely "mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, nonaggression, noninterference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence" are first put forward by late Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai to handle international relations. Since then, these principles have guided China's foreign policy and its efforts to contribute positively to global peace and development.

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is one of the testaments to China's dedication to peaceful development and international cooperation. Through the BRI, China seeks to enhance connectivity and promote economic collaboration across Asia, Africa and Europe, fostering a shared future of prosperity and stability.

In addition to the BRI, China has also put forward the Global Security Initiative (GSI) in 2022, aiming to address the complex security challenges facing the world today. The GSI underscores China's commitment to a new vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security. The initiative promotes dialogue and cooperation among nations to resolve conflicts, enhance mutual trust and collectively address global security threats. By advocating for shared security, China aims to build a more secure and stable world for all.

"Looking back on the scars of war is to remind us to cherish and safeguard the hard-won peace and stability," an employee at the September 18th Historical Museum told China Media Group. He expressed his hope that the tragedies of history will never repeat.

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