China’s legislature stresses enhancing whole-process people’s democracy
China’s top legislator on Tuesday urged the National People’s Congress (NPC) to uphold and improve the people’s congress system and continuously enhance whole-process people’s democracy.
Li Zhanshu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the 13th NPC, made the remarks while delivering a work report at the first session of the 14th NPC.
Whole-process people’s democracy is a model of socialist democracy that covers all aspects of the democratic process and all sectors of society, according to a white paper titled “China: Democracy That Works,” released by China’s State Council Information Office in 2021.
‘Strong vitality and superiority’ of the NPC
The NPC and its standing committee have stayed committed to the Party’s leadership, the people’s position as the masters of the country and law-based governance, according to the report.
Li said the five-year term of the 13th NPC Standing Committee coincides with a period of “great historical change” in which the cause of the Party and the country is flourishing.
Talking about the most important achievement of the NPC Standing Committee during the five years, Li highlighted that the concept of whole-process people’s democracy profoundly explains the basic connotation, essential features and fundamental principles of socialist democracy in China.
In 2021, a central conference on work related to the people’s congresses was held in Beijing. Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, said at the meeting that the whole-process people’s democracy in China “not only has a complete set of institutions and procedures but also full participation and practices.”
“It is the broadest, most genuine and most effective socialist democracy,” Xi said.
Meanwhile, the work report said the 13th NPC has ensured the full implementation of the Constitution and upheld its authority and sanctity during its five-year term.
Over the past five years, improvements have been made to the Constitution and other relevant laws, noted the report.
In particular, the NPC adopted the Constitutional amendment, which made it clear that the leadership of the Communist Party of China is the defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics. The constitutional amendment also established the guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era in China’s political and social activities.
Adhering to whole-process people’s democracy
The practice of the past five years has further deepened the understanding of the scientific connotation, basic characteristics and essential requirements of the system of people’s congresses, said the report.
“We must uphold the leadership of the CPC and ensure that the constitutional principle that CPC leadership is the most essential feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics is fully implemented,” according to the report.
The year 2023 marks the first year for China to fully implement the guiding principles of the 20th National Congress of the CPC, the report said.
On the work of the NPC Standing Committee for the coming year, the report highlighted efforts in enforcing the Constitution, implementing legislation, strengthening the supervision of people’s congresses, improving the work of deputies, among others.
Xi, Putin sign joint statement on deepening comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for the new era
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin jointly signed and released here on Tuesday the Joint Statement of the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation on Deepening the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership of Coordination for the New Era at the Kremlin in Moscow.
In the statement, the two sides pointed out that China-Russia relations are not the kind of military-political alliance during the Cold War, but transcend such a model of state-to-state relations and have the nature of no-alliance, no-confrontation and not targeting any third party.
They said that different countries have different histories, cultures and national conditions, and they all have the right to choose their own development path. There is no such a thing as a superior “democracy.” The Russian side highly regards the Global Civilization Initiative proposed by the Chinese side.
The Russian side in the statement reaffirms its adherence to the one-China principle, recognizes Taiwan as an inalienable part of Chinese territory, opposes any form of “Taiwan independence,” and firmly supports China’s measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Both sides agree to strengthen cooperation in law enforcement such as preventing the “color revolution,” and cracking down on the “three forces” including the “East Turkistan Islamic Movement,” transnational organized crime, economic crime and drug crime.
The two, according to the statement, will build a closer partnership for energy cooperation, support enterprises of both sides in promoting energy cooperation projects such as oil and gas, coal, electricity and nuclear energy, and promote the implementation of initiatives that will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including the use of low-emission energy and renewable energy.
They will also jointly safeguard international energy security including the security of key cross-border infrastructure, and maintain the stability of industry and supply chains of energy products.
Russia spoke highly of the Global Development Initiative (GDI) and will continue to participate in the work of the Group of Friends of the GDI.
The two countries call on an objective, impartial and professional investigation into the explosion of the Nord Stream pipeline, said the statement, adding that they jointly oppose the attempt to politicize origin tracing of viruses.
China and Russia express serious concerns about the consequences and risks of the trilateral security partnership – AUKUS and related nuclear-powered submarine cooperation programs among the United States, Britain and Australia on regional strategic stability.
The two sides strongly urge AUKUS members to strictly fulfill their obligations of non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery, and safeguard regional peace, stability and development.
They also express serious concern about Japan’s plan to discharge nuclear-contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident into the sea this year, and stressed that Japan must conduct transparent and full consultations with neighboring countries and other stakeholders and relevant international agencies.
The two sides urged Japan to properly handle the nuclear-contaminated water in a scientific, transparent and safe manner, and accept the long-term supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency and related countries, so as to effectively protect the marine environment and the rights to health of people of all countries.
Also in the statement, the two sides expressed serious concern about the biological military activities of the United States, both inside and outside the country, which seriously threaten other countries and undermine the security of relevant regions. They demand that the United States make clarification on this, and refrain from carrying out all biological activities that violate the Biological Weapons Convention.
The two sides urge NATO to abide by its commitments as a regional and defensive organization, and call on NATO to respect the sovereignty, security, interests as well as diversity of civilizations, history and culture of other countries, and treat their peaceful development in an objective and fair manner.
They also express serious concern about NATO’s continuous strengthening of military security ties with Asian-Pacific countries and undermining regional peace and stability. The two sides oppose piecing together a closed and exclusive group structure in the region, and stirring group politics and camp confrontation.
China and Russia, said the statement, express concern over the situation in the Korean Peninsula, and urge the U.S. side to respond to the legitimate and reasonable concerns of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea with practical actions and create conditions for the resumption of dialogues.
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