Category Archives: Exchange

Nobel Peace Prize 2018: PRIO Director’s Shortlist

Based on independent assessments, PRIO Directors have offered their personal shortlists for the Nobel Peace Prize every year since 2002. Current Director is Henrik Urdal.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee   bases its decision on valid nominations received by the 31 January deadline.  Anyone can be nominated (and history indeed shows a few rather dubious nominees, including Hitler), but only a number of people have the right to nominate  , including members of national assemblies and governments, current and former members of the Committee, Peace Prize laureates, professors of certain disciplines, directors of peace research and foreign policy institutes, and members of international courts. The five committee members have until their first meeting after the deadline to add nominations of their own. The Director of PRIO holds the right to nominate, but refrains, given his active role as a commentator. He has no form of association with the Nobel Institute or the Norwegian Nobel Committee. Read more here.

The laureate will be announced, as per usual, on the Friday of the first full week of October.

Following the shortlist, you will also find a list of known nominations.

For questions, requests for further information or interviews,
please contact the Director’s Adviser  or the Director directly .

 

Henrik Urdal’s 2018 Nobel Peace Prize Shortlist

  1. Dr. Denis Mukwege & Nadia Murad
  2. World Food Programme
  3. Oby Ezekwesili & EITI
  4. International Memorial
  5. Can Dündar & Cumhuriyet

Dr. Denis Mukwege & Nadia Murad

The early frontrunners for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize should be Denis Mukwege and NadiaMurad, two people who have been leading figures in bringing attention to sexual violence in conflict. Although their experiences and practices differ greatly, there can be no doubt about the potency of their global advocacy work against sexual violence in conflict. Denis Mukwege has provided treatment for thousands of women and is a world-renowned expert on repairing the physical damage from rape and sexual violence. Through the work done at his Panzi Hospital in Bakuvu, Democratic Republic of Congo, he has been instrumental in drawing the world’s attention to these kinds of crimes. In addition to Mukwege, who has featured on both mine and my predecessor’s shortlist earlier, the work of Nadia Murad as an international advocate against sexual violence in conflict deserves recognition. Murad, one of the thousands of Yazidi women and girls who were abducted and held by the Islamic State as slaves, has worked relentlessly to bring attention to victims of sexual violence in wars. While there is increased focus and criminal prosecution of sexual violence in armed conflicts, we see that groups use it in new and systematic ways. Therefore, the highlighting of Murad’s case takes on a new dimension of importance. However, she’s not only a spokesperson for victims of sexual violence in conflict, but also for her people – and, alongside her attorney Amal Clooney, she’s working the international system for Islamic State members to be prosecuted, taking her case all the way to the UN for justice. Murad has won the Sakharov human rights prize along with fellow Yazidi Lamiya Aji Bashir, who would also be a worthy candidate for recognition in a year celebrating the 10-year anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1820, which explicitly recognizes the use of sexual violence as a tactic of war and a war crime.

[For the sake of transparency, it should be noted that PRIO researchers have collaborated with Mukwege and the Panzi Hospital for a research project on female empowerment.]

World Food Programme

Hunger is once more one of the big humanitarian challenges of our times, with various hunger crises emerging in the wake of armed conflicts. The World Food Programme is the leading humanitarian organization tackling the hunger issue worldwide. Whether food insecurity follows due to armed conflicts such as in Syria and Yemen (where over 17 million people depend on the WFP for survival, according to their own statistics) or internal displacement and ethnic tensions such as in Myanmar, the WFP is ever-present.

While the evidence for an impact of food security on violent conflict remains tenuous, it is well established that armed conflict severely affects food security. Indeed, the final report of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals rightfully identifies armed conflict as the main reason for failures to meet the MDG target of increased food security. Hence, while reducing food insecurity in itself might not be the most important peacebuilding measure, conflict prevention and food security remain intrinsically linked.

A Nobel Peace Prize to the WFP would highlight the crucial work the organization is doing for populations fleeing from conflict, while also ensuring continued commitment from its funders to keep up their endeavors to make sure victims of conflict, displacement and natural disasters are fed and cared for. Hopefully this will also pave the way for further conflict prevention measures. Hunger crises might not get the headlines that wars and armed conflicts do, but they are just as – if not more – deadly.

Oby Ezekwesili & EITI

Corruption is a main driver of social upheavals around the globe, underpinning recent major developments like the Arab Spring. Corruption also thrives during and after war, and many conflict-affected countries are among the most corrupt in the world. Oby Ezekwesili, former Minister of Education in Nigeria and Vice President for Africa in the World Bank and one of the founders of Transparency International, has been an international champion in the fight against corruption. Ezekwesili was also the Federal Minister of Solid Minerals and the Chairperson of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), leading the first ever national implementation of the global EITI standards.

Ezekwesili and the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) are worthy candidates because of their efforts in making the world more transparent and less corrupt. The link between armed conflict and high-value natural resources is strong: EITI was established in 2003 as a direct response to the mounting evidence showing that poor governance of natural resources may lead to an economic ‘resource curse’ and increased conflict. Increased transparency over extraction processes and financial results has led to a more sober and nuanced debate about the extractive industries and their output, and has the potential to help defuse conflicts and reducing tensions before they even happen. EITI’s efforts to create multi-stakeholder groups in which civil society is involved is a model case for inclusiveness in such a politically and economically important issue.

Anti-corruption and transparency champions have not traditionally been considered as obvious candidates for the Nobel Peace Prize. Yet, natural resources, transparency, corruption and conflict are intrinsically linked. This important work by individuals and organizations like Ezekwesili and EITI is deserving of attention, and a Nobel Peace Prize to the field of anti-corruption and transparency would be a welcome boost now that key actors such as the U.S. have abandoned the EITI by the wayside.

International Memorial

Russian civil society organization International Memorial monitors human rights in Russia and works to put Russia and the Soviet Union’s totalitarian past on the record. In an ever more repressive environment, Memorial defends and upholds its ideals with quiet dignity, and provides a welcome shining light for democracy, civil society, and human rights in Russia. In 2016 Memorial was listed as a “foreign agent” by the Russian government, a tactic Human Rights Watch say is used to “demonize” dissenting voices. The organization and its members have also suffered arrests, abuse, and attempted murder, as well as the arson of offices in Chechnya and the Northern Caucasus.

With the upcoming presidential election likely to see Vladimir Putin reelected without any notable change to his platform, Memorial is needed more than ever to remind Russians and the world that the spread of authoritarianism has to be countered and fought against.

One of Memorial’s founding members, Svetlana Gannushkina, has been listed on the PRIO Director’s Nobel shortlist earlier – for her efforts helping migrants and refugees in Russia. However, every man and woman who contributes to make Memorial the great organization it is deserves credit and recognition. A Nobel Peace Prize to Memorial would be an acknowledgement of the peaceful efforts made by Russian civil society to oppose authoritarianism and advocate freedom, democracy, and human rights in Russia.

Can Dündar & Cumhuriyet

Exiled Cumhuriyet editor Can Dündar and his erstwhile paper remain symbols of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s crackdown on the freedom of the press in Turkey. Dündar has faced charges of disclosing state secrets and aiding a terrorist group, and later fled to Germany where he still resides. Similar charges have been filed against several of Cumhuriyet staff, and many of the court cases are still ongoing. The acts for which they are indicted amount to no more than doing their jobs as journalists by pursuing independent and critical reporting. Dündar himself was awarded the International Press Freedom Award by The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) in 2016.

Dündar and the newspaper where he served as a columnist and later editor-in-chief, Cumhuriyet, are disheartening examples of how far freedom of the press has declined in Turkey. One of Turkey’s oldest newspapers and a steadfast secular and republican-leaning publication, Cumhuriyet has been renowned for its independent reporting and fearlessness in criticizing the authorities – underscored by it being awarded the 2015 Freedom of the Press Prize by Reporters without Borders for its stand against mounting government pressure.

A Nobel Peace Prize to Can Dündar and Cumhuriyet would be a welcome boost for press freedom and civil society in a country where such liberties are becoming rarer. It would also underline Erdogan’s unacceptable dismantling of Turkey’s democracy.

 

Nominations for the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize

The below list is based on available information in the press, on the web or provided to us directly. It is surely far from exhaustive, as the Nobel Committee each year receives more than 200 nominations, and the listings are far from certain. Nominators are asked not to disclose their nominations, and the committee’s proceedings are kept secret for 50 years. Consequently, we cannot guarantee that the committee indeed has received a specific nomination, nor, in some cases, whether the nominator is eligible. As long as the nominator fulfils the criteria, any one person or organization may be nominated regardless of objective standing (the nominations of Hitler and Stalin being cases in point). The committee may also add names to the list, themselves, before their first meeting after the deadline. The committee base their final selection on specifications in Alfred Nobel’s will , their interpretation of which is disputed by the Nobel Peace Prize Watch . The NPPW usually keep their own list of worthy and qualified nominations according to their reading of the will.

  • Edward Snowden has been nominated  by Norwegian MP Petter Eide
  • The White Helmets are nominated  by Norwegian MP Arne Nævra
  • The Committee Against Torture and
  • Olga Sadovskaja have been nominated  by Norwegian MP Petter Eide
  • Novaja Gazeta and
  • Elena Milasjina have been nominated  by Norwegian MP Petter Eide
  • Svetlana Gannusjkina has been nominated  by Norwegian MP Petter Eide
  • The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has been nominated by Norwegian MP Lars Haltbrekken
  • The European Court of Human Rights has been nominated  by Norwegian MP Petter Eide
  • Denis Mukwege and 
  • Yanar Mohammed have been nominated  by Norwegian MP Karin Andersen
  • The Iraqi-kurdish Peshmerga forces have been nominated  by Norwegian MP Himanshu Gulati for helping defeating the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.
  • Joshua Wong Chi-fung,
  • Nathan Law Kwun-chung and
  • Alex Chow Yong-kang, front persons for the Hong Kong pro-democracy movement, have been nominated  by Marco Rubio and a bipartisan group of US congressmen.
  • The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights has been nominated  by Norwegian MP Bjørnar Moxnes
  • The Humanitarian Law Centre and
  • Nataša Kandić has been nominated  by US Senator Roger Wicker and US Representative Eliot Engel.
  • Dr. Daisaku Ikeda is nominated by 1976 Nobel laureate Betty Williams (confirmed by Williams).
  • Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama has most likely been nominated  by Indonesian MP.
  • George Soros has most likely been nominated  by Hungarian group of academics and clergy.
  • Yussouf Shaheen is allegedly nominated by Pakistani nominators, but no actual nomination or names of nominators have been reported in media or submitted to PRIO.
  • The Giulio Andreotti Institute and Secret Archives and
  • Patrizia Chilelli, Director of the Giulio Andreotti Institute and Secret Archives are confirmed nominations by an American Professor of Philosophy. We are unable to verify the existence of an institution by this name, but there does exist an Andreotti Archive at the Sturzo Institute.
  • Peacebuilding organisation Search for Common Ground is nominated  by the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)
  • Jaha Mapenzi Dukureh, Gambian anti-FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) activist, is nominated  by Norwegian MP Jette Christensen (Labour Party).
  • Ilham Tohti, Uighur intellectual and activist, currently serving life imprisonment in China, is nominated  by Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Bulgarian politican and Member of the European Parliament.
  • Enzo Cursio, Italian journalist is nominated  for his work for peace, human rights and disarmament, by Nobel laureate of 1976, Mairead C. Maguire.
  • Soheil Farah of Lebanon, and
  • Yuri Yakovets of Russia, are reportedly nominated  for their work for a sustainable and peaceful global future, by a group of Russian academics including Professor Alexei Gromyko at the Russian Academy of Sciences.
  • Archbishop Louis Raphaël I Sako, head of the Iraqi Chaldean Church community, is reportedly nominated .
  • The Arctic Council is nominated  by a group of international academics including Lassi Heininen, Professor of Arctic politics at University of Lapland (FI).
Do you have additional (confirmed) nominations to add to the list? Let us know! And just to be clear: if you mean to actually nominate someone, we are not the correct addressee.

The nomination of President Donald J. Trump was reported to us earlier and consequently figured on the above list for some time until it was revealed that the nomination was forged. See e.g. this NY Times article  for more info on the issue.

Chinese Ambassador Gui Congyou visits Almo Leksand

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, July 28(Greenpost)– Chinese Ambassador to Sweden Gui Congyou has visited Almo Leksand Northwest of Stockholm to learn about Swedish countryside.

Goran Skarner, director of Almo Association gave a good introduction about the village saying that houses there have a history of 500 years and mostly well kept as they were.

However, this area is also very international  because a lot of Swedish in the area married with people from other countries. This has brought a lot of vitality to the area.

For example, they not only keep the old houses well, but also build new houses to attract pilots from all over the world.

He said so far there are fourty households in the area。 Each owns an airplane and can drive the airplane.  Russel is from Scotland and he came to this area three years ago.  He has a big house to hold the small airplanes and he himself is also a pilot.  He said he get to know the area through the internet.

Today there is also a tree cutting competition.  Forests workers compete with each other to see how fast and accurate to cut certain trees.

Skarner said the village is managed by different kinds of associations  to take care of various services such as roads and forests.

The activity was organized by PROFOCA, Professional Foreign Correspondents Association and attended by Xuefei Chen Axelsson, President of PROFOCA, Vice President Jorge Navarro and Secretary of PROFOCA RIc Wasserman as well as communication consultant Geetha Skarner.

Chinese Embassy Spokesperson’s Remarks on Angela Gui’s Article Published by Dagens Nyheter

STOCKHOLM, July 26(Greenpost) — Chinese Embassy Spokesperson published remarks on DN’s Angela Gui’s Article on July 12.  The full text is as the following:

Recently, the Swedish newspaper, Dagens Nyheter (DN), published an article, “Angela Gui: Mänskliga rättigheter existerar inte i ett vakuum”, which alleged that the Chinese law enforcement authority “kidnapped” Gui Minhai and “tortured” him. The article is a complete fabrication seriously inconsistent with facts and intended to maliciously smear China, which is totally unacceptable. The Embassy has sent DN a letter to express firm opposition, and present China’s position as follows:

Gui Minhai has committed serious crimes in both China and Sweden. In the 1990s, Gui Minhai illegally established a school in Gothenburg and enrolled over 100 students from China to Sweden by deception. He swindled hundreds of thousands of US dollars this way and eventually led to the death of two students. On 23 June 1999, SVT broadcast a news report on Gui Minhai’ s fraudulent activities. To escape punishment of the Swedish law, Gui Minhai fled back to his hometown Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, China, and has never returned to Sweden ever since.

In 2003, at 12:17 pm on December 8, Gui Minhai killed a young college girl while drunk driving in Ningbo and escaped from the scene. In August 2004, the Chinese court handled the case according to law and sentenced Gui Minhai to two years in prison with a two-year reprieve for the crime of causing traffic casualties. In November of that same year, while he was still on probation, Gui Minhai used a fake identity to get a passport and fled out of China. In 2015, Gui Minhai returned to China and turned himself in. The claim of Angela Gui and some Swedish media that he was “kidnapped” is a sheer false tale.

In October 2017, Gui Minhai was released in accordance with law after completing his two-year term for the crime of causing traffic casualties. In January 2018, he was suspected of several offences including illegally providing state secrets and intelligence overseas, and the Chinese public security authority used criminal coercive measures against him in accordance with law. This case is currently under investigation according to law.

The claim in the article that Gui Minhai was “tortured” is totally groundless. The Chinese side safeguards Gui Minhai’s lawful rights according to law. There is no so-called “torture”. On the contrary, the Chinese side has arranged thorough medical checkups for Gui Minhai carried out by senior medical experts. The diagnosis has shown that Gui Minhai is in good physical and mental condition and is not suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) as alleged by some Swedish media. China handles in accordance with relevant international law and Chinese law and agrees in principle to the Swedish side’s request for a consular visit to Gui Minhai and providing medical services to him.

We wish to stress that China is a country ruled by law with a commitment to law-based governance in all areas. All people are equal before the law, with no exceptions. Any foreigner in China has to abide by Chinese law and regulations, with no super-national treatment. Though Gui Minhai is a Swedish citizen, his criminal case in China must be dealt with by Chinese competent authorities in accordance with Chinese law, in which no other side has the right to interfere. It is hoped that the Swedish side will respect the spirit of the rule of law and China’s judicial sovereignty. As a State Party to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, China has always attached great importance to and strictly fulfilled its obligations under this convention. In particular, in the process of advancing law-based governance in all areas, China has continuously deepened its judicial reform, strengthened protection of human rights, and made a lot of great tangible progress. It is hoped that DN will abide by professional ethics and principles, report on china on the basis of facts, and ensure objectivity and impartiality in reporting, so as to play a constructive role in enhancing mutual objective understanding between our two peoples. It is also hoped that DN will have the courage to publish our letter and let the readers learn about the truth. The Chinese Embassy in Sweden is willing to conduct open and candid dialogues on relevant topics with DN and its readers in an positive and constructive manner.

Source: Chinese Embassy

Ambassador Gui Congyou Gives Exclusive Interview with Expressen

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, July 26(Greenpost) — On 17 July 2018, Ambassador Gui Congyou gave an exclusive interview with Arne Lapidus, journalist of Expressen, at the Embassy. Following is the full text of the interview:

Gui Congyou: Welcome to the Embassy. Our embassy is open to all Swedish friends. Instead of an interview, I would like to see our meeting today as a frank and friendly conversation. Since taking office, I have talked extensively with friends from all sectors of the Swedish society, and they all wanted to know more about China.

However, certain Swedish media and journalists, with their bias, stereotype and hostility, described China as a country without any merit. The truth is that China is developing rapidly, the life of its people is improving and China is making increasing contribution to global peace and development.

As an old Chinese saying goes, “Listen to both sides and you will be enlightened; heed only one side and you will be benighted.” It means that one can only reach a comprehensive and objective understanding of a subject after listening to all sides, whereas hearing from one side leads to a biased conclusion.

My colleagues and I, as ambassador, are willing to communicate with Swedish journalists and media, including Expressen. Some of you say that I am an ambassador with a mission. Indeed, all ambassadors from all countries have their missions.

My mission is to present Sweden to the Chinese people and China to the Swedish people in an objective, accurate and comprehensive manner, to promote friendly exchanges and cooperation between our two countries, and to build a bridge of friendship, communication and cooperation between our two peoples. That is exactly what my colleagues and I have been doing. I am encouraged by the outcomes of our efforts, and I am confident that friendly exchanges and cooperation between our two countries will be deepened.

Q: Thank you, Mr. Ambassador. It is my honor to visit the Embassy. You mentioned many areas of friendship and cooperation between China and Sweden and that you are ready for open dialogue. However, recently you and the Embassy criticized the Swedish media. Do you think that helps open dialogue?

Gui Congyou: As I said, one of my main missions is to present China to the Swedish people in an objective, accurate and comprehensive manner. Most Swedish media and journalists are friendly toward China. They cover China’s development and contribute to the friendship and cooperation between our two countries.

However, a small number of media and journalists are hostile to China. They see China as a country with no merit. It is not true at all. After our efforts to remind them have failed and for the friendship and cooperation between our two peoples, we have no choice but to point out their bias and hostility. We hope they will follow the professional ethics of journalists and stop viewing China through colored glasses. These efforts are to help these media and journalists to abide by journalistic ethics.

Q: My Impression is that the Embassy stepped up its media offensive since last Autumn. Why?

Gui Congyou: The main task of every ambassador of every country is to reach out to all sectors of the host country, including the media, to strengthen mutual understanding and cooperation through open dialogue. Since becoming Chinese Ambassador to Sweden, I talked to friends from all departments of the Swedish Government, Parliament, political parties, local governments, universities, and the business community. We discussed how to tap into the enormous potential of bilateral cooperation and facilitate the development of each other. Through talking with friends of the press, I found that though aspiration for friendship and cooperation is the norm, some certain media and journalists harbor prejudices against China. Despite significant progress achieved by China, we do not deny that some problems are yet to be resolved. To secure further development of the country and improvement of people’s life, a lot more needs to be done. We welcome constructive suggestions and criticism from friends from Sweden and other countries, but firmly oppose the attempts, by certain media and journalists with hostility and bias against China, to undermine the friendship and cooperation between China and Sweden, as it is not in the fundamental interest of our two countries and peoples. We are obligated to point out their mistakes, and hope that they will join the team for friendship and cooperation between our two countries. This is our goodwill.

Q: You talked a lot about friendship and cooperation, but we noticed that you warned if Sweden keeps pressuring China over the Gui Minhai case, the two countries’ relations might be affected. Do you believe what you said promoted friendship and cooperation? It sounds like a superpower pressuring a remote and small country.

Gui Congyou: I don’t quite agree with you calling Sweden a remote and small country. Though the Swedish population of 10 million may not seem very big, its 450,000 km² of land is the 5th largest in Europe. More importantly, it is a great power in terms of industry, science and technology, innovation, national defense and diplomacy. Sweden and China are both firmly committed to protecting free trade and addressing climate change. As early as 1972, Sweden proposed the notion of sustainable development. It is the first and most successful country in carrying out green and environment-friendly development. In terms of quality of development, Sweden is no small country at all.

On the Gui Minhai case, we have been in close communication with friends from the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs. We meet at least once every week to discuss how to properly handle the case. We positively consider the Swedish side’s requests for consular access and a Swedish doctor’s visit to him. Though Gui Minhai has stated publicly that he does not want to meet anyone from the Swedish side, considering the Swedish side’s concerns, the Chinese officers are working to persuade him. I’d like to take this opportunity to give you an important update. We are working on a visa for the Swedish doctor, and we hope he will come to China as soon as possible. A certain Swedish journalist, without making efforts to learn about the close communication between the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and me, made irresponsible claims that China rejected a medical consultation by a Swedish doctor for Gui Minhai. These claims are totally inconsistent with the facts. I hope to pass the information to this journalist through you. He should stop making irresponsible claims and accusations before knowing the facts.

As for the case itself, I stressed many times when I talked to Swedish friends, that he committed serious crimes in both China and Sweden. How Sweden handles the serious crimes he committed in Sweden in the 1990s is up to Sweden, which we do not seek to interfere. But China is a country ruled by law and everyone is equal before the law. The crimes he committed in China must be dealt with under the Chinese law. It is natural for countries to have differences. But what is important is for the differences to be handled through friendly and equal-footed negotiations, instead of one side pointing fingers at the other. When some people try to pressure China to immediately release Gui Minhai, we cannot help but ask whether it is consistent with the principle of rule of law to have someone that committed such serious crimes released without trial. It is important that we deal with this case on the basis of mutual respect and equality and in accordance with the principle of rule of law. Such an approach will only improve the friendship and cooperation between our two countries, instead of damaging it.

Q: Gui Minhai has been jailed for more than 1,000 days and he was forced to make three confessions on TV. The Swedish Government said it was unacceptable. In this context, how can this case be dealt with appropriately?

Gui Congyou: Did Gui Minhai say he was forced to make confessions on TV? I have not heard of it. With a criminal like him, as long as the two countries handle the case based on the spirit of rule of law, there will not be any disputes. Chinese authorities have been investigating and dealing with his other crimes in China according to law. There is a strong concern of the Swedish Government to arrange a medical consultation for him, and we took it in consideration during the investigation process. The Chinese authorities will surely investigate and deal with the Gui Minhai case in accordance with Chinese law.

Q: Not only Swedish journalists criticize the media environment in China, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) also says that China’s media environment is worsening every year. What do you think?

Gui Congyou: I have never heard of that. This year marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening-up. During the past 40 years, a large number of foreign journalists came to China to work. Their coverage helped the outside world to know about China, which is an important contribution to the friendship and cooperation between China and other countries. As for the foreign journalists, including some from Sweden, who complain that the working environment in China is worsening, I suggest they reflect on their own behaviors first. Any journalist who works in another country should abide the law of that country and follow the professional ethics of journalists. To those journalists who complain about China, we might as well ask whether they have followed the journalistic ethics and the Chinese law.

Q: I am not quoting from some individual journalist, but quoting from the IFJ report, which also said China is restricting foreign journalists’ work through not giving visas to them. It seems like China is hiding something from the world, doesn’t it?

Gui Congyou: Over the past 40 years, thanks to reform and opening-up, China achieved significant progress in its economic and social development and substantially improved people’s living standards. China will continue to pursue high-quality development and deliver a good life to its 1.4 billion people. China will carry on with opening-up and our door will open even wider. We welcome more journalists to work in China and cover its development. We are open and aboveboard, and we do not try to hide anything. When you talk to the people of IFJ, please tell them what I said. We welcome foreign journalists to work in China, but they need to abide by the Chinese law and journalistic ethics. If they do, they will not have any problem working in China.

Q: Besides IFJ, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) also said that the work of foreign journalists is obstructed in China. In their report, China ranks 176th out of 180 countries, almost at the bottom. What do you think of freedom of the press in China?

Gui Congyou: My suggestion is that you go to China to see for yourself our policies and attitudes toward foreign journalists. I also have some personal thoughts on freedom of the press. Undoubtedly, there is something universal about freedom of the press, but absolute freedom of the press does not exist in any country. The prerequisite of press freedom is that the coverage needs to be based on facts that are verifiable and obtained in an honest way. These are minimum requirements of journalistic ethics. We hope that journalists can base their criticism of China on facts. To my knowledge, all countries have different degrees of restriction on freedom of the press. Take the US, the country that claims to be the most tolerant of speech, for example. There are at least nine restrictions on freedom of speech, including restriction on desecrating the national flag or burning draft-cards; restriction on jokes endangering public security; restriction on jeopardizing public order and causing riots; restriction on disturbing quiet school environment; restriction on spreading false information; restriction on hindering others’ rights; and restriction on obstructing urban traffic and violating traffic rules under the name of freedom of speech and association. These are the restrictions on freedom of speech in the US. In Sweden, I do not think there is absolute freedom of speech and press either. Sweden is preparing for its parliamentary election, where many political parties and people are calling for restriction on speeches of violence, hatred, extremism and racism. It is a subject that you know more about than me, and I hope you will share relevant information with me. As for the irresponsible comments from the so-called IFJ, they need to change their mentality first, as they cannot enjoy freedom of speech that is beyond the law or freedom of the press that goes against journalistic ethics. If one judges freedom of the press without regard to the law of the host country or journalistic ethics, one can only reach a biased and subjective conclusion.

Q: You are right. There is no absolute freedom of the press. However, almost all journalists associations criticize China, and a foreign correspondents association in China also said reporters face more and more harassment from China and that it is increasingly difficult to work in China. This seems to be in contradiction with your opinions that China is more and more open and that the working environment of foreign journalists in China is getting better and better. What is your comment?

Gui Congyou: First of all, all major countries and major media outlets across the world have resident reporters in China. I suggest you go to China personally and ask these foreign journalists working in China whether they share the same view as these so-called journalists associations. We welcome more foreign journalists to work in China, but just like any other country, we require foreign journalists to abide by Chinese law and follow the professional ethics of journalists. As to those so-called journalists organizations seriously prejudiced against the freedom of the press in China, you may ask if they have complied with relevant Chinese law and whether they have followed journalistic ethics. If not, I hope they will change their approach.

Q: IFJ also said that China has arrested more reporters than any other country in the world. In recent years, there have been altogether over 900 incidents where reporters in China were impinged upon, including more than 250 press censorship incidents, over 190 arrests, and over 80 incidents of harassment with threats. What is your comment on this?

Gui Congyou: I am not aware of the situation you mentioned. As I said, it is hoped that foreign reporters working in China will abide by Chinese law and follow journalistic ethics. They should first examine their own behaviors, instead of blaming others or even making unfounded accusations.

Q: A journalist from Expressen, Mr. Jojje Olsson, had worked in China for many years and has been covering China and written four books on China. But according to our information, his visa application to China has been denied. We would like to know why China refused such a respectable journalist who reports on China?

Gui Congyou: I don’t know this person. Is he truly a journalist? Does he have a certificate in journalism?

Q: I don’t know if he has a certificate in journalism or not. But he does publish articles on newspaper and has written books about China. Usually, we regard such people as journalists. Since he has written books, we may also call him an author.

Gui Congyou: As far as I know, since 2010, Mr. Olsson has repeatedly used invitation letters issued by Chinese business agencies to apply for visas to China for “business and procurement”. But every time he went into China, he conducted neither business nor procurement, but news reporting. In the last time, he still used an invitation letter for business and procurement to apply for a visa. We told him that his activities in China were seriously inconsistent with what he had claimed, and that if he wanted to go to China for reporting, as an international practice he should apply for a Journalist Visa. But he refused to apply for a Journalist Visa. Then of course, we refused to grant a visa to him, which is also an international practice. Now, although he is not in Beijing, he still uses the blog site “InBeijing” to publish articles. If you have a chance to meet him, please tell him we recommend that he rename his blog in accordance with his actual address. If he is in Stockholm, use “InStockholm”. If he is in Chinese Taipei, use “InChineseTaipei”. This is what we call honesty. He claimed to be an expert on China in Sweden and published a large number of comments and articles to maliciously attack China. As long as someone in Sweden makes a statement different from his point of view, he attacks that person viciously. Do you call this freedom of the press? ! We also learned that in early 2014, when Dagens Industri (DI) was recruiting a reporter to be stationed in China, Mr. Olsson applied for the job. But the night before the interview he got too drunk to be able to attend it, so he asked a friend to pretend to be him. His friend successfully passed the interview, but when DI found in the second interview that he was not the same person as they previously interviewed, they sternly refused to hire him. Do you think what Mr. Olsson did is appropriate? I’m talking about facts now, verifiable facts. You may go check their authenticity if interested. I hope that journalists will follow professional ethics and work in an honest manner. If you see him, you can tell him that I am willing to meet him. I hope he has such courage.

Q: If he comes to the Embassy to apply for a visa again, will you grant it to him?

Gui Congyou: It depends on how he reflects on the dishonest things he has done in the past. In fact, he has cheated many times to get visas in the name of doing business and procurement. According to my knowledge, there are sanctions in Sweden against those who have lost credibility for many times. Whether he can get a visa to China depends on whether he can be an honest person.

Q: You just said that China is more and more open and welcomes more foreign journalists to work there. But now almost all international journalists organizations and reporters working in China are criticizing China, saying that China is becoming less and less open and that freedom of the press in China is worsening day by day. How do you explain it? Is this a conspiracy against the great China by all reporters in the world?

Gui Congyou: As I have said, I have not heard of such comments by any international journalists organization. All major countries and major media outlets across the world have many resident reporters in China. If you would like to know foreign journalists’ work in China, I suggest you do not listen to what others say first. Go to China, have a look around, and learn the truth through your own personal experience. Of course, I am not surprised at all if these criticisms come from Mr. Olsson.

Q: Thank you, Mr. Ambassador, for doing such a long interview. Do you have anything else to tell us?

Gui Congyou: As the Chinese Ambassador to Sweden, my mission is to promote China-Sweden friendship. Therefore, shortly after I took office, I wanted to publish an article in the Swedish media to introduce my mission and promote China-Sweden friendly cooperation. We contacted several media outlets and were rejected. I hope that Expressen will actively consider publishing the article. About 270 years ago, the merchant vessel “Götheborg” made its first trip from Sweden to China and opened China- Sweden cooperation and peaceful trade along the Maritime Silk Road. China-Sweden friendly cooperation has a long history.

Q: Yes, and Sweden has built another “Götheborg” ship which visited China in 2007. It was a famous voyage. Many large Swedish companies participated and many young Swedish people learned about the historical exchanges and cooperation between China and Sweden.

Gui Congyou: Therefore, we must carry on the friendly cooperation between China and Sweden from generation to generation. I have reached a consensus with many Swedish friends that there are 100 reasons for China and Sweden to strengthen cooperation, but no single reason to hinder cooperation. There is neither historical dispute nor modern geographical conflict between our two countries. China is implementing the new concept of innovative, coordinated, green, and open development that is for everyone in an effort to achieve high-quality development. Sweden is a world leader in innovation and sustainable development, and Sweden’s successful development experience contributes to China’s pursuit for high-quality development. China and Sweden have identical positions in supporting free trade, opposing protectionism, and tackling climate change. The Swedish companies, local governments and universities I have visited all expressed the hope to export high-quality products to China, deepen friendly exchanges and cooperation with China, or recruit students from China. We are actively providing assistance for them. By the end of last year, the number of Chinese people studying in Sweden exceeded 8,000, among which about 7,000 are self-funded students. Last year, Chinese tourists registered about 400,000 bed nights in Sweden, and this number is still growing at a double-digit rate. Bilateral trade volume between China and Sweden reached USD15 billion in 2017 with a growth rate as high as 37%, and Sweden shifted from deficit to a surplus of USD900 million in trade with China for the first time. As China steers toward high-quality economic development and seeks to meet the demands of Chinese people for a better life, we need to import a large amount of premium products. We welcome the Swedish side to expand exports to China. Quality goods exported from Sweden to China will bring good profits to Sweden and help China in pursuing high-quality development and meeting Chinese people’s aspirations for a better life, which is a win-win result. Our conversation today is very meaningful, and you are welcome to the Embassy again in the future. Please also tell other friends of the media that China is more and more open and welcomes more journalists to work there. We also welcome more Swedish friends to go to China for travel, study, business, and investment.

Source: Chinese Embassy.

Kinesiska ambassadör Gui: Att främja den traditionella vänskapen för att fördjupa vårt gemensamma intresse

 STOCKHOLM, July 26(Greenpost)– Kinesiska ambassadör Gui Congyou har skrivit den här artikel om hans jobb i Sverige.  Full text är nedende:
Jag har arbetat som den tjugonde kinesiska ambassadören i Sverige i nästan ett år.

Fast Kina och Sverige är geografiskt långt ifrån varandra, är vår vänskap långvarig och väletablerad. Så tidigt som 1739 seglade Ostindiefararen Götheborgs till Kina och kinesiska porsliner, silke och te fick komma till Sverige längs den maritima sidenvägen. Vi kommer alltid ihåg att Sverige inte deltog i västmakternas invasion och plundring i den tid när Kina var svagt och sårbart. Vi kommer alltid ihåg att Sverige är det första västlandet som upprättade diplomatiska förbindelser med Folkrepubliken Kina. Det politiska modet och den strategiska visionen av dåtidens svenska ledare är mycket beundransvärt. Vi kommer alltid ihåg att Sverige stöttade Kinas rättsliga plats i FN, och efter Kinas reform och öppnande, blev Sverige en gång till det första västlandet som undertecknade handels-och investeringsavtalet med Folkrepubliken Kina och därefter aktivt utförde ekonomiska och tekniska samarbeten, vilka bidrog mycket till Kinas ekonomiska och samhälleliga utveckling.

Nuförtiden går relationer mellan Kina och Sverige ständigt framåt. I juni 2017 reste Sveriges statsminister Stefan Löfven till Kina för World Economic Forum, och träffade Kinas president Xi Jingping och premiärminister Li Keqiang och nådde viktiga överenskommelser om att vidare främja kännedom om varandra och fördjupa pragmatiska samarbete med hänsyn till principerna av ömsesidigt respekt och jämlikhet. De viktiga överenskommelserna ska utforma framtidens kinesiska-svenska relationer. Samtidigt fanns det frekvent bilaterala besökt på olika nivåer i 2017. 6 svenska ministrar besökte Kina och 26 kinesiska delegationer på vice-ministers eller ministers nivå kom till Sverige.

Samarbeten mellan Kina och Sverige håller fart i olika område. I många år har Sverige varit Kinas främsta affärspartner i Norden och Kina Sveriges största i Asien. I fjol steg handelssiffran mellan Sverige och Kina med 29 % till 15 miljarder US Dollar. Sveriges export till Kina ökade med 24 % och redovisade ett överskott av 690 miljoner US Dollar. Volvo och Geely:s “äktenskap” har skapat tiotusentals jobb och blivit ett framstående exempel på samarbete mellan Kina och Sverige även Europa.

Mellan Kina och Sverige har man etablerat 31 par vänorter, där utbyte förstärkt och samarbete fördjupade. Enligt SCB:s statistik är antal hotellövernattningar av kinesiska turister i Sverige 203 000 i 2014, 258 000 i 2015, 323 000 i 2016 och mer än 400 000 i 2017. Kinesiska turister är nu den största kundgruppen av tax-free handel i Sverige. I juni 2017 undertecknades det första mellanstatliga utbildningsavtalet och antalet kinesiska gäststudenter i Sverige steg till 8000. Det kinesiska kulturcentret i Stockholm spelar en viktig roll i att förmedla den kinesiska kulturen och traditionell konst.

Sedan jag anlände i Sverige den 18:e augusti i fjol har jag haft omfattande kontakt med den svenska regeringen och samhället. Jag känner att de goda relationerna mellan Kina och Sverige ännu kan förbättras, det finns verkligen stora möjligheter.

Vi har liknande utvecklingslinjer och är ekonomiskt komplimenterande till varandra. Den 19:e nationella kongressen för det kinesiska kommunistiska partiet har framgångsrikt avslutats och nya utvecklingsambitioner fastställts. Under President Xi Jingpings stadiga ledarskap har Kina sjösatt 5 nya utvecklingskoncept som är innovation, balanserad tillväxt, en grön ekonomi, öppnande samt inkluderande utveckling. Det kinesiska folkets önskemål för det goda livet kommer att förverkligas och arbetet för moderniseringen av Kina ska träda intill en ny epok.

Inom 5 år kommer Kina att importera mer än 8 biljoner dollar av varor, och investera 750 miljarder dollar utomlands. Antalet turister som reser till utlandet kommer att vara fler än 500 miljoner. I de kommande 10 åren planerar Kina att investera nästan 600 miljarder dollar inom den gröna ekonomin. The Belt and Road initiativet kommer att öppna upp en ny betydelsefull möjlighet för att utveckla samarbete mellan Kina och Sverige.

Vi har också omfattande överenskommelser och mycket gemensamma intresse i internationella frågor. Vi är fast beslutna att upprätthålla det globala frihandelssystemet. Vi motsätter oss protektionismen och främjar en öppen världsekonomi. Vi aktivt deltar i multilaterala handlingarna för klimatfrågan och främja genomförande av Parisavtalet. Vi är starkt engagerade i världsfred, stabilitet och säkerhet, förespråkar dialog i konfliktlösningen och vi både motsätter oss alla former av terrorism.

Att främja en sund, stabil och hållbar utveckling av relationer mellan Kina och Sverige gynnar inte bara oss själv, det kommer också att främja en allsidig utveckling av relationer mellan Kina och EU samt världens fred, stabilitet och välstånd.

Relationer mellan Kina och Sverige står inför en ny historisk startpunkt. Som Kinas ambassadör till Sverige vill jag, tillsammans med mina svenska vänner, implementera våra ledares viktiga överenskommelser, med ömsesidigt respekt, för gemensam nytta. Vi skall fördjupa samförstånd och utvidga samarbeten, främja kulturella utbyten och främja överläggningar i globala och regionala frågor. Tillsammans ska vi skapa en bättre framtid för det kinesiska svenska samarbetet, och ett bättre liv för våra folk.

Sweden invests 1 billion SEK in testbed for electromobility

Edited By xuefei Chen Axelsson

 RISE (Research Institutes of Sweden), and Chalmers University of Technology have now begun, with support from the Swedish government, the establishment of a Swedish testbed for electromobility. Overall, contributions from the government, and the industrial partners CEVT, Scania, Volvo Cars and Volvo Group, enable an investment of 1 billion Swedish krona for the testbed.

In 2017, RISE and Chalmers University of Technology were tasked by the Swedish government with creating a testbed for electromobility. It has now been decided that the testbed, called the Swedish Electric Transport Laboratory (SEEL), will be located in the Lindholmen area of Gothenburg, with facilities in the Stockholm region too. RISE and Chalmers will build and own the facility jointly, with industry as the customer base.

The aim of SEEL is to strengthen the competitiveness of the Swedish automotive industry, to help Sweden remain at the forefront of innovations in the transport sector, and to accelerate the shift towards a fossil-free Swedish society.

SEEL will provide testing for all the different areas of electrified transport. For example, electrified gearboxes and driveshafts for different types of vehicles, drivetrain and component testing for hybrids and electric vehicles, as well as charging and smart power-management. Even the marine and aviation sectors are expected to be able to make use of the testbed.

“The automotive industry is extremely important for Sweden, and today we take an important step to secure Swedish automotive jobs in the great transition that is taking place in the transport sector. From fossil to renewable, from petrol and diesel to electricity. Our goal is to make Sweden one of the world’s first fossil-free welfare states. And to do that we need to both cut emissions and secure our competitiveness. The Swedish automotive industry will play a key role in this transformation,” says Mikael Damberg, Minister of Enterprise and Innovation.

Stefan Bengtsson, President and CEO of Chalmers says, “this investment offers great opportunities for education, research and industrial development. The testbed complements the laboratories that Chalmers already has. It is ideal for us to take responsibility as one of the owners, to effectively contribute to rapid knowledge development relating to electric vehicles”.

“SEEL is unique in terms of the close collaboration that will take place between industry, institutes and academia. It has all the potential to become a world-leading electromobility testing facility. Together with our testing area for active vehicle safety, AstaZero, and our new test facility for stress-testing automotive electronics and wireless communications, Awitar, SEEL makes RISE well-equipped to be a strong innovation partner for the Swedish automotive industry in the future,” explains RISE CEO Pia Sandvik.

“CEVT has a clear mission within the Geely Group to become a world-leading innovation center. Electromobility is an area that allows for new features that will be absolutely essential for our future products to meet tomorrow’s requirements for fossil-free vehicles. Development of these features requires deep understanding of components and systems – SEEL will be part of the base we need to continuously develop this knowledge,” says Mats Fägerhag, CEO of CEVT (China Euro Vehicle Technology).

“Scania is driving the shift towards a fossil-free transport system. Electrification will be an important part of that journey, and Sweden – with large vehicle makers, green energy and good cooperation between politics, academia and the corporate sector – has unique conditions to take a heavy role in this development globally,” believes Björn Westman, Senior Vice President and head of powertrain development at Scania. “The two electric transport laboratories will be very beneficial for both developing and testing of heavy electric vehicles in Sweden,” he continues.

“We in the automotive industry have a major role to play in climate-management, and electrification is an important part of that work,” states Lars Stenqvist, Chief Technology Officer at Volvo Group. “We have started with buses and our first electric trucks, but much more research and development is required. SEEL will help us – and Sweden – to remain a leader in the development of vehicles and systems for climate-neutral transport.”

“Volvo Cars’ ambitious electrification strategy means that SEEL will be an important tool when developing and verifying the new technologies we are planning for the coming years,” says Paul Welander, Senior Vice President at Volvo Cars. “During the years 2020-2025, we anticipate a significant shift towards electrified vehicles, so the timing for SEEL is ideal. It is also an investment that will benefit both the industry and society.”

The different parts of the test bed will come into use as they become ready, with the lab expected to be fully operational by 2022.

Source from Chalmers University.

Huai Jinpeng presents how to serve 91 million scientific workers in IVA

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, June 26(Greenpost)– Vice Executive  President of China Association for Science and Technology, CAST, Professor Huai Jinping who is also academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences Wednesday made a presentation at the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences conference center in Stockholm.

He briefed the audience about how his association serve 91 million scientific workers in China.

He said that his association has the mission to popularize scientific knowledge and gave advice to the central or local government on scientific development policies.

He said his association also shoulders the task to help poverty eradication by 2020. They send a lot of doctors to the poor areas to help cure diseases because usually a poor family was a result of someone in the family has serious disease.  It was diseases that leads to poverty. Another way is to send scientific personnel to the countryside to teach farmers how to grow crops scientifically and use less pesticides to have a sustainable agriculture.

The third way for poverty eradication is to have partnership with industries.

Huai also said that the purpose of this visit was to establish a good relation with the Swedish counterparts for future cooperation.

He said China also took a lot of measures to attract young people to be interested in science.

Professor Tuula Teeri, President of Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, IVA said what Huai said in many ways similar to Swedish way in practice.

One experience from Sweden is to recruit young students from senior high school to be an intern in a science and engineering program for four months before they decide to go to universities.  After these four months, those who have had these experiences usually choose to stay with science and engineering and can continue to work in this field. That is an effective way to attract young people who have the potential to be engaged in scientific research or engineering.

Zhang Biao, Charge Daffair from the Chinese Embassy, Dai Gang, Counsular of Sci-tech department at the Chinese Embassy, Cao Yihai, professor at the Karolinska Institutet and about more than 30 scientific workers attended the presentation and asked questions.

 

 

  Tibetologist points out that Dalai Lama’s Middle Way Is Independence in Essence

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, June 26(Greenpost) – Chinese Tibetologist Hao Shiyuan has pointed out that Dalai Lama’s so-called `Middle Way` is in essence seeking independence in Tibet.

He made this clear at a seminar in Institute For Security and Development Policy on Tuesday when he led a delegation of Tibetologists from China to visit Sweden.

This was also an answer to the question asked by Oskar Gustafson, editor of ISDP on what problem China is really facing between the central government and the Tibet Autonomous Region or Dalai Lama.

Hao said the Chinese central government had kept contact with Dalai’s private representative for  a long time. But after the March 14th incident took place in Lhasa in 2008 and the disturbance of the Beijing Olympic Torch, Dalai Lama issued a MOU. To summarize the content of this MOU, China held that the so-called Middle Way is an idea that took place in colonized countries after the Second World War.

“He also borrowed the idea of Hong Kong SAR to ask the central government to implement one country two systems idea. But this idea is against the Chinese Regional ethnic autonomy system. Tibet Autonomous Region has been a part of China. Due to this different ideas, China held that there is no way to continue the dialogue. Although Dalai Lama said he wanted to have dialogue, his stance left no room for further dialogue. The condition to have dialogue is to admit that Tibet is already a region of China. “ said Hao.

ISDP’s Mats . Engman presided over the seminar and he said Sweden likes to have dialogue with China on Tibetan issue even though Tibetan issue is not a focus for ISDP.

Erik Isaksson from ISDP explained that ISDP is an independent research institute which has two offices, one in Sweden and the other in the US.  They mainly research on Asia, Central Asia and Caucus’ areas.  Since their establishment in 2007,  it has received many Chinese, North Korea and South Korean researchers. Currently they have two researchers from Chinese PLA Academy.

Hao Shiyuan gave a presentation about the History and Reality of Tibet. In his presentation, he gave a sharp contrast picture of the past and the present.  He said before the liberation of Tibet, it was a political entity with a combination of politics and religion. Only 5 percent of the chiefs and religious leaders enjoyed the privilege while 95 percent of the total population were serfs and slaves who had no personal freedom at all. Even the British historian Goldstein described Tibet as a primitive medieval place. But Dalai Lama has described Tibet as a heaven in human society.  Maybe it was true for his 5 percent of the population, but for majority of the Tibetans, it was suffering.

Hao said in 1951 when Chairman Mao met with Dalai Lama, the latter agreed to 17 provisions of peaceful revolution and reform. Maybe he understood that the Tibetan political system came an end, yet the reform will also end the system. According to the 17 provision agreed by both Dalai Lama and the central government, Dalai Lama position would remain the same. But after he attended a meeting in India in 1959, Dalai Lama changed his stance. After his flee to India, Tibet experience a democratic reform and the serfs and slaves became the master of themselves.

Hao said today Tibetan people enjoy very good education and a complete education system has been established. They also enjoyed the religious freedom. Currently 1700 temples function normally.

Hao said Dalai Lama think of how to get independent while central government is thinking of how to improve the living standards of the Tibetan people.  In Tibet, tourism is one of the pillar industries.  Pregnant women and baby death rate are very low and the rights level are up to the national average. By 2020, Tibet will also have to eradicate all the poverty as planned.

Zhaluo said in Tibet Autonomous Region, there are mainly the Gelu sect of Buddhists, but there are a few others too. Even some people believe in Christianity and Islam.

Mats. Engman asked “Tibet must fall into the debate of border issues between India and China since there is still disagreements on territory in that region. What is China’s approach to ensuring that all partners are brought to the table to discuss the potential security dilemmas on this issue?”

Hao said Sino-Indian border issue has great to do with the British legacy of irrelevant borderline, but has nothing to do with Tibet.

About Chinese map, Hao said before 1949, Chinese map was decided according to history. For example from Qin Dynasty to Song Dynasty, people often thought land outside the Great Wall did not belong to China. But when the Mongolians united China, Chinese map became larger and larger. Tibet Autonomous Region is a historic assets to China left from Chinese history. Only after 1949, China has entered into a modern country.

Gustafson asked: how can the PRC better engage with the Tibetan Government in Exile (or the Central Tibetan Administration) and what issues could they see arising if effective dialogue is not achieved?”

Hao said if Dalai Lama really changes the Tibetan system, it will definitely cause great contradiction. But according to Chinese regional ethnic autonomy system, Tibetans enjoy autonomous freedom. Meanwhile, the economic and social development in Tibet will resist the violence.

Hao said Dalai Lama announced in 2011 that he would retire and then established a so called exiled government.  Chinese government does not recognize this organization, nor will contact it, or treated as representative of Dalai Lama.

Engman said“ISDP strives to anticipate where future conflicts might break out.

Zhang Biao, Charge  D\affair at the Chinese Embassy, Chen Jiliang, Director of Political Department of Chinese Embassy, Cirenpingcuo, Gesangyixi,Xiaojie and Wang Lixin from the delegation and Fatoumato Diallo from ISDP attended the seminar.  Journalists Jorge Navarro from Mexico, Ulrika Bergsten from Sweden and Xuefei Chen Axelsson from Green Post in Sweden were also present at the seminar.

SCT:Experience Chinese Embassy Open House in Stockholm

STOCKHOLM, June 13(Greenpost, Chineseonline)– Chinese Embassy in Sweden held Open House in Stockholm on Sunday.

Chinese Ambassador Gui Congyou and his wife Madame Song Jingli who leads Sunshine class at the Embassy and the whole Embassy staff welcomed over 100 guests from Stockholm Future School and Stockholm University. The following video shows a glance of the Open House.

Filmed and produced by Xuefei Chen Axelsson

精彩视频:2018年“赢在苏州”国际创客大赛在斯德哥尔摩成功举办现场实况

北欧绿色邮报网报道(记者陈雪霏)– 2018年“赢在苏州”国际创客大赛在斯德哥尔摩成功举办。本次大赛在瑞典著名的卡罗林斯卡医院新大楼会议中心举办, 近200名学生学者观摩本次比赛。下面请看精彩实况。

大赛开始前播放苏州情况介绍。上有天堂下有苏杭不是玩笑。

赢在苏州大赛的承办单位北欧华人创新创业协会执行会长林颖博介绍情况,中国驻瑞典大使馆科技处戴钢致辞,苏州市领导周文蓉致辞。

苏州市领导周文蓉部分致辞,尹畅主持的大咖精彩演讲和参赛者路演开始。

参赛者路演。

参赛者路演。

参赛者路演。

参赛者路演

参赛者路演

比利时参赛选手路演

路演

参赛者路演

参赛者路演

参赛者路演

路演

路演

吴中推介

苏州工业园区推介

苏州推介。

陈雪霏2018年5月26日于卡罗林斯卡医院会议中心录制。

 

Ambassador Gui Congyou Meets with Members of the Professional Foreign Correspondents Association

 STOCKHOLM, May 30(Greenpost)–On 23 May, Ambassador Gui Congyou met with foreign journalists in Sweden from the Professional Foreign Correspondents Association (PROFOCA), including its Chairperson Ms. Chen Xuefei and Secretary General Mr. Wasserman, at the Embassy. Political Counsellor Zhang Biao attended the meeting.

Ambassador Gui spoke positively of the interest PROFOCA gives to China. He said that China, since the reform and opening up 40 years ago, has made remarkable achievements and captured the interest of more and more media outlets. With China becoming increasingly open, it is hoped that foreign journalists will have a deeper understanding of China and report the stories of China objectively and truthfully, so as to play a positive role in improving the understanding of China by Sweden and other countries in the world.

The foreign journalists in Sweden said that the development of China has attracted broad attention from the international community. China’s innovation and technological achievements, such as mobile payment and high-speed rail, have taken the lead in the world. They will go to China more often to conduct field interviews and introduce the real China to Sweden and the world, on the basis of the principle of objective and balanced reporting.

Source: Chinese Embassy

   SCEA and China-Sweden Startup Forum encourage young entrepreneurs to come to China

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, May 29 (Greenpost) – Sweden-China Entrepreneur Association sponsored China-Sweden Startup Forum has encouraged Swedish young people to come to China to establish their businesses.

Being held in Stockholm’s KTH on May 25, over a hundred Swedish students and overseas Chinese students attended a forum titled Dragon Slide meaning that people are afraid of going to Chinese market, but the Chinese Dragon will actually bring a lot of opportunities for entrepreneurs.

Zhang Qiaozhen, President of Sweden-China Entrepreneur Association opened the forum and explained the mission of her association.

Zhang Qiaozhen said her association has held various summit between China and Sweden. For example, they held Nordic exhibition gallery during China International Cultural Fairs in Shenzhen in early May. In November they will participate in the China International Technology Achievement Fair (High-tech Fair) and host Nordic exhibition gallery to build up bridges in science and culture between Nordic countries and China. She called on young entrepreneurs to participate in her Nordic exhibition gallery in November this year.

She said under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, China has lowered its development speed and sought for high quality and efficiency. China is stepping on the green and low carbon and sustainable development road. This will not only be conducive to Chinese people but also contribute to the global development. Sweden has a lot of good experience worthwhile for China to learn.

Zhang Qiaozhen’s speech won a lot of response from the young entrepreneurs.

Juan Mauritz, founder of Swedish Startup Forum and SISP Chinese regional director Ulf Borbos also introduced their responsibilities at the opening of the forum.

Daigang, Counselor of Science and Technology of the Chinese Embassy in Sweden also attended the forum. He discussed the startups with Zhang Qiaozhen during the forum.

During the forum, Swedish entrepreneurs and professionals explained why people should go to China to develop with their own experiences and the difficulties and lessons.

The forum also arranged a program called Explore China meaning that they will arrange students to visit China and 777 students registered. Finally 16 were selected to have the chance to go to China to visit enterprises.

Many people are interested in exploring China, but they have language and cultural difficulties and that is what Sweden-China Entrepreneur Association likes to serve for them.

The forum attracted one than a hundred students and young entrepreneurs and they also commended the forum is very interesting and informative.

Text/Xuefei Chen Axelsson,

Photo/ provided by Sweden-China Entrepreneur Association.

Editor/ Xuefei Chen Axelsson

 

contact: chenxuefei@greenpost.se

Ambassador Gui Congyou Celebrates Professor Chen Zhu’s Winning of the 2018 Sjöberg Prize

Chinese Ambassador Gui Congyou said  China is willing to further strengthen international cooperation on medical research with Sweden and other countries and contribute more to the health of all human beings.

On 14 April, Chinese Ambassador to Sweden Gui Congyou held a reception at the Embassy to celebrate Professor Chen Zhu’s winning of the 2018 Sjöberg Prize. Prof. Chen Zhu and his wife Prof. Chen Saijuan, President of the Karolinska Institutet Mr. Ole Petter Ottersen, International Director at the Swedish Red Cross Mr. Melker Mabeck, Chairman of the Sjöberg Foundation Mr. Ingemar Sjöberg and other scientists and eminent persons from the Swedish medical and health care communities, and all the diplomats at the Embassy attended.

In his speech, Ambassador Gui, on behalf of all the embassy staff, extended warm congratulations to Prof. Chen on his winning of the 2018 Sjöberg Prize. Ambassador Gui said Prof. Chen Zhu and his research team, through tireless long efforts and in collaboration with French scientists, developed a new targeted treatment for leukemia. They have saved thousands of lives in China and across the world and made great contributions to the development of the world’s medicine and human health. The 2018 Sjöberg Prize is a recognition of their long-term, in-depth research and joint efforts to overcome the world’s medical problems, and also an endorsement of their successful international cooperation in science and technology. Prof. Chen’s visit to Sweden to receive the award is of great significance in promoting the friendly cooperation between China and Sweden and enhancing international cooperation in related fields. Ambassador Gui said that strengthening the prevention and control of major diseases is an important component of the Healthy China initiative proposed at the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China. China is willing to further strengthen international cooperation on medical research with Sweden and other countries and contribute more to the health of all human beings.

Prof. Chen said in his speech that the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences’ conferring the 2018 Sjöberg Prize on him once again made the “China Solution” for treating acute promyelocytic leukemia the focus of attention in the world medical community. This research result is a successful example of international cooperation. It is a beautiful story of the East meeting the West and the combination of traditional Confucianism and modern Western medicine. Scientific research transcends national borders. In scientific and health research, scientists from across the world share the same belief and are committed to serving human health, which in turn promotes mutual trust and people-to-people links among countries. It is an essential component of the Belt and Road Initiative, and also an important content in the construction of a new type of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind. Prof. Chen said he and his team would continue working with partners both at home and abroad to understand the mechanisms behind other types of hematological malignancies and to develop innovative and effective therapeutic strategies through collaboration, for the well-being of human society.

Prof. Chen said over the years China and Sweden have maintained a good momentum of development in scientific and technological cooperation and have conducted broad and effective cooperation in various fields such as health, water resources, energy, mining, space, etc. The friendship between the two peoples has a long history, and the merchant ship from the 18th Century, the Göteborg, has become a unique symbol of China-Sweden friendly exchanges. Sweden is also the first Western country to establish diplomatic relations with China, and the bilateral relations have continued to grow to new levels, with China becoming Sweden’s most important trading partner in Asia. He expressed the hope that China-Sweden friendly cooperation will continue to deepen and make more positive contributions to world peace and development.

President of the Karolinska Institutet Mr. Ottersen said the winning of the 2018 Sjöberg Prize by Prof. Chen vividly explained how medical research could bring hope to thousands of patients and promote friendship and mutual trust among countries. We all agree that medical research can become an important component of the Belt and Road Initiative and that extensive cooperation should be carried out in the health field to bring health and hope to the people along the routes. Karolinska Institutet is willing to strengthen cooperation with scientists from China and other countries to tackle medical problems and jointly promote health and medical equality, to the greater benefit of the people of all countries.

In 2016, the Swedish entrepreneur Mr. Bengt Sjöberg donated 2 billion Swedish kronors (about 250 million US dollars) to establish the Sjöberg Foundation for the promotion of scientific research in the fields of cancer, health and environment. The Sjöberg Prize funded by the Sjöberg Foundation is conferred by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Minister Antti Häkkänen: International community must work harder to stop financial flows to terrorism

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson
Stockholm, April 27(Greenpost)–In order to fight terrorism we need to intervene in its financing, and international cooperation is required to achieve this, Minister of Justice Antti Häkkänen said when speaking at a high-level conference in Paris today.
The conference dealt with measures to be taken by the international community to combat the financing of terrorism.

Around 80 states from all over the world and several international organisations attended the conference, which was convened by French President Emmanuel Macron.

“Criminalisation of financing of terrorism, firmly anchored in human rights, is an important and necessary means to prevent terrorist offences. However, this alone is not enough. The 80 countries from all over the world and the international organisations represented in this conference can together change the world by blocking the flow of money to terrorism. One of the most important ways to fight terrorism is to find the sources and channels of funding and then close them down as effectively as possible,” Häkkänen said.

Terrorism cannot be stopped without intensifying the international cooperation. According to Häkkänen, more effective international exchange of information is required to be able to trace financial flows all the way to their final destination.

“For instance, information requests on suspected terrorist financing should be processed by all states much faster than at the moment. In addition, we need to keep up with the constantly changing operating environment. Various unofficial, often anonymous and digital money transfer services make detecting and preventing terrorist financing very challenging,” Häkkänen said.

“Furthermore, we need more efficient and more extensive legal cooperation in criminal matters. Competent authorities in all states should respond to international requests for legal assistance without delay and cooperate as widely as possible. It is crucial that all countries present here today are committed to stepping up our collective efforts to fight the financing of terrorism.”

“An enormous amount of work is being carried out within the European Union to create a safe living environment for ordinary citizens. I also consider it important that the EU continues to be an active global actor that strives to deepen the international cooperation to fight terrorism,” Häkkänen said.

2018 “Belt and Road” Nordic Spring Peace and Culture Festival held on Stockholm Cultural Night

By Xuefei Chen Axelsson

STOCKHOLM, April. 21(Greenpost) – 2018 Belt and Road Nordic Spring Peace and Cultural Festival and Li Li’s Chinese Paintings Exhibition  have been successfully held as a part of Stockholm Cultural Night which was a cooperation with over 100 museums, galleries, opera houses and other cultural locations to open free to the public from 18:00-24:00 on April 21.

The festival was held by China-Europe Cultural Association, Professional Foreign journalist Association or PROFOCA in cooperation with Chinese Teachers Association in Sweden.

Chinese Ambassador to Sweden Gui Congyou spoke highly about the festival.

“The opening of the Stockholm Cultural Night and Belt and Road International Peace and Cultural Festival is of great significance in such a period of time. China and Sweden have enjoyed  very good relations and the bilateral relations are on a new historical starting point with great potential to tap. With Chinese style in  Stockholm Cultural Night, it will make the night even more beautiful and be conducive to Sino-Swedish relations. ” said Ambassador Gui.

“China proposes Belt and Road initiative based on the principle of discussing together, jointly building and sharing the result to improve relations with various countries and  expand cooperation with various countries. People to people relation is one of the five parts of belt and road initiative and cultural exchange is an important way to communicate with each other. ”  he said.

“I understand that tonight there will be a big banquet of culture including instrument performance, dancing and singing, and Chinese woman artist Li Li’s painting and the Chinese film Romance on the Lushan Mountain, I hope you all have a good evening.  ” said Ambassador Gui.

China-Europe Cultural Association is a non-political , non-religious organization consisting 75% of Chinese women in Sweden aiming at enhancing Chinese culture and enrich their life in Sweden and serving as a bridge between China and Sweden.

Ambassador Gui said he also welcomed journalists from PROFOCA and other foreign friends to visit China. Over the past 40 years of reform and opening up, China has experienced great changes. Since the 18th Party’s Congress, China has entered a new era. Now China enjoys stable social and political environment and high quality economic development.  Nearly 1.3 billion people have shrugged off poverty and the rest 50 million will eradicate their poverty situation by 2020. In the International arena, China plays an important role in maintaining world peace, security and stability.  It is a main force for world harmony. I believe the journalists can find some good news from China.

Xuefei Chen Axelsson, President of China-Europe Cultural Association and PROFOCA explained why they held this event.

She said to be part of the Stockholm Cultural Night made her proud to be able to contribute to the cultural life in Stockholm with some Chinese flavour. This is also a sign that Sweden is open and international.

“We hold 2018 Belt and Road Nordic Spring Peace and Culture Festival in order to guard world peace.  Belt and Road Initiative proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping is not to impose Chinese influence by purpose, but treat it as a way to promote peace and development. Sweden was the destination of the maritime silk road taking the boat Gothenburg as an example. We like to promote cultural exchanges between China and Sweden and China and Europe. ” said Chen Axelsson.

“The third is to celebrate the exhibition of Beijing women artist Li Li. Although it is a small scale of 30 small pieces of paintings, it is profound and a real action of bilateral cultural exchange. ” she said.

As a journalist herself, Chen Axelsson said while China insists on peace and development, some other parts of the world are not very peaceful. She held that violence and conflict are the biggest enemy of sustainable development. We condemn all kinds of violence.  Violence and conflict are a result of illiteracy. Belt and Road initiative aims to avoid violence and conflict. Through peace and development, people’s living standards can be improved. Without peace, there will be no development. We must value the peaceful environment. We believe that cultural exchange is conducive to understanding between different people and countries, and further avoid conflict and maintain world peace and stability.

Last year, we held the first Nordic Spring International Cultural Festival, we also held other cultural activities such as holding lectures and listening to Chinese actor Pu Chunxin’s presentation held in Chinese Cultural Center . By learning Chinese culture, we feel more peaceful and life is more joyful.  By going to China and reporting the Party Congress, I saw China’s peaceful transition to a new era aiming at wiping out poverty completely and building a modern Chinese society. We shall continue to work hard to serve the members and contribute to Sino-Swedish good relations.

The performances began with Swedish Chinese Children’s choir’s singing.

Dong Jiajun’s Hulusi performance is very beautiful. The music is really very good for ear. Hulusi is an instrument from China’s Yunnan Province, Southwest China.

He Ruiyu sang the song Rolling up the Bamboo Curtain beautifully.

Chinese women choir also sang very well. Some of them are the mothers of the children’s choir .

Natali Dansstudio’s girls brought modern dance.

Tang Shiyu sang a beautiful Chinese song called the size of the heaven.

 

Li Zhanchun sang Tianbian, Little Populars Tree and I love you China reminding us the beautiful China of the 1980s.

Ric Wasserman sang Bob Dylan’s song Blowing in the wind.

Li Jia sang a song about Chinese River Liuyanghe.

Zhai Yijia played erhu horse racing, a master piece by Erhu.

Hao Jingxia sang the classic Kunqu Dream in the Garden looking like Peking opera.

Uppsala Confucius Class pupils performed a singing and dancing program attracting the attention of other children.

Xuefei Chen Axelsson sang an inner Mongolian song Take me to the Prairie.

Finally Ambassador Gui and all the artists and guests sang together My Motherland led by Li Jia.

 

Ric Wasserman also sang many other blues style songs with American flavour making the festival international.

Beijing woman artist Li Li’s paintings stand by the wall around the hall which hosts more than 200 people.

The programs attracts Swedish, Russians, Americans and Chinese.  The Chinese food is also part of Chinese culture.

Finally a film Romance on Lushan Mountain was played to end the cultural night at midnight.

Also present at the cultural night were Dou Chunxiang, Education Consular, Zhang Lei, Consular department director, Consular Li Xiaojie and Luo Jinsheng. Ye Peiqun, Execultive President of Sveriges Kinesiska Förbund, Duan Maoli, Anhui Association of Science and Commerce in Sweden, Jack Yu, President of Sino-Swedish Life Science Association, Yin Chang, Kinesiska Riksförbundet I Sverige, Sun Kai, President of Chinese Teachers Association in Sweden, Zhao Lijie, Vice President of China-Europe Cultural Association, Zhouzheng, Secretary of Europe-Asia Cultural Promotion Association, Yang Chungui, President of  Acupuncture Science Association Sweden and Zhao Lijie, Vice President of China-Europe Cultural Association.

The festival was hosted by Åsa and Arthur Lou Guofeng.

Text/Xuefei Chen Axelsson,  Photo/Wu Ming.