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China urges better preservation efforts for ethnic minority cultures

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As the lyrics of a popular folk song in China goes, “the brothers and sisters from the 56 ethnic groups belong to the same family.”

China is home to 56 ethnic groups – the majority Han makes up around 91.5 percent of the country’s population along with 55 ethnic minorities, according to 2021 data. Northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has been a multi-ethnic region since ancient times and, right now, it consists of over 45 ethnic groups.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, paid a visit to Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang, from Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday morning. On Wednesday morning, he watched a show called “Manas”, which is from the Kirgiz ethnic minority at the Museum of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. The performances have been inscribed as an intangible cultural heritage.

A cultural heritage like “Manas” is a treasure of both the Kirgizs and the Chinese nation, President Xi said, urging better preservation and promotion efforts. 

The president added that the extensive and profound Chinese civilization is composed of outstanding cultures of various ethnic groups.

Xi urges officials to better respond to the needs of the people

While visiting the Guyuanxiang residential community in the Tianshan District on Wednesday morning, Xi urged local officials to put more effort into community-level work to better learn and respond to the needs of the people.

A lot of work must be done by relying on communities, Xi noted, adding that he attaches great importance to the work at the community level.

Xi also called for strengthening Party organizations at the community level and improving services in communities to benefit residents of all ethnic groups.

Xinjiang, a hub in Belt and Road cooperation

As Belt and Road cooperation advances, Xinjiang is no longer a remote corner but a core area and a hub, President Xi pointed out during his Tuesday afternoon inspection in Urumqi International Land Port Area.

Remarkable progress has been made since the Belt and Road Initiative was proposed, Xi said, telling the staff at the land port area that their work is of great significance.

While acknowledging the progress they have made, Xi encouraged them on to even greater success. 

The ‘irreplaceable’ Corps

Xi traveled to Shihezi City on Wednesday afternoon, where he inspected the officials and staff workers at the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC), a group whose status he called “irreplaceable.”

Speaking to XPCC officials and staff workers, Xi said he was pleased about the great progress made by the XPCC in reform and development, and XPCC officials and staff workers themselves should also be proud. He stressed efforts to make the Corps stronger and more prosperous.

Xi also expressed his hope that XPCC officials and staff workers will carry forward the spirit of the XPCC, continue to work hard, step up reform, and make down-to-earth and persistent efforts to make the XPCC stronger and more prosperous.

During his stay in Shihezi City, Xi also learned about the history of the XPCC in cultivating and guarding the frontier areas, as well as the Corps’ efforts in strengthening its primary-level organizations, developing specialty agriculture, and promoting the integrated development of the Corps and local areas. 

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Chinese ambassador: Xi’s visit to usher in next ‘golden’ 30 years of Sino-Kazakh ties

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Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Kazakhstan will open up another “golden” 30 years of China-Kazakhstan relations, Chinese Ambassador to Kazakhstan Zhang Xiao said during an exclusive interview with China Media Group (CMG).

Noting that this year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Kazakhstan, Zhang said the bilateral ties have been continuously lifted to higher levels with new results achieved. He said he is confident that the visit will provide a new blueprint, impetus and vigor for bilateral ties.

The Chinese ambassador said President Xi’s choice of Kazakhstan for his first visit after the onset of COVID-19 pandemic reflects the high importance China attaches to its relations with Kazakhstan and the high level of permanent comprehensive strategic partnership between the two.

According to Zhang, the two countries’ trade volume reached $17.69 billion in the first seven months of the year, up by 18.9 percent year on year.

Against the backdrop of the pandemic, the rapid and healthy development of Sino-Kazakh interconnection has made an important contribution to the stability of the global industrial and supply chains, he said.

The Belt and Road Initiative has proved to be a mutually beneficial road of friendship, prosperity and success for China and Kazakhstan, Zhang said.

Referring to the cooperation between China and Kazakhstan in the framework of multilateral organizations, Zhang said China and Kazakhstan are both founding members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

Over the past two decades, the two countries have always upheld the “Shanghai spirit,” maintained close communication and collaboration within the SCO framework, facilitated cooperation among SCO countries in various fields, and made important contributions to the promotion of regional security, stability, development and prosperity, said the ambassador.

He said China and Kazakhstan support the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group and other mechanisms in promoting the settlement of the Afghan issues and working together to address regional hotspot issues.

Zhang also stressed that China actively supports the Summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia, which will be hosted by Kazakhstan later this year. Wishing the meeting success, he said he believes it will inject new momentum to enhance trust and strengthen cooperation among Asian countries.

(Cover: A China-Europe freight train arrives from Kazakhstan at Xinzhu Station in Xi’an, Shaanxi Province, Northwest China, February 3, 2021. /Xinhua)

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