Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during the general debate of the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at the UN headquarters in New York, on Sept. 27, 2013. (Xinhua/Niu Xiaolei)
UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday reaffirmed China's commitment to pursuing peaceful development, dispersing concerns that a stronger and more prosperous China might seek hegemony.
"As China has enjoyed fast development over the years, some people are concerned that China may repeat the beaten track that a country will inevitably become arrogant and seek hegemony when it grows in strength and becomes powerful; and various versions of China threat have surfaced," Wang said in his speech at the general debate of the 68th UN General Assembly, which entered its fourth day here Friday.
"However, what happened in the past cannot be applied indiscriminately to today's China," he noted. "China will stay firmly on the path of peaceful development."
Wang recalled that nearly 40 years ago, it was on this podium that Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping solemnly declared on behalf of the Chinese government that China would never seek hegemony in the world.
"Today, his statement remains our unchanging commitment and conviction. China has and will continue to honor its promise and be a staunch force for upholding world peace," he said, calling on all other countries to embark on the same path.
Since the beginning of the reform and opening up in late 1970s, China has become increasingly interdependent with the global economy and integrated into the international system. "We are committed to working with others to establish a new type of international relations based on win-win cooperation and seek peaceful resolution of international and regional disputes," Wang said.
On China's disputes with some countries over territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests, the foreign minister said Beijing sincerely hopes to resolve them properly through negotiation and consultations with countries directly involved.
And those disputes that cannot be resolved now should be shelved for future solution, he added.
"This is our consistent position and practice," the minister stressed. "On the other hand, we will, under whatever circumstances, firmly safeguard China's sovereignty and territorial integrity and resolutely uphold China's legitimate and lawful rights and interests."