“We will take back Taiwan, even with the use of force if necessary”. This was said by Chinese President Xi Jinping at the beginning of the historic 20th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. “The reunification of the motherland will be completed”.
The twentieth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party opened today, Sunday 16 October, in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. Also present was President Xi Jinping along with his predecessor Hu Jintao, the elders of the party and the current members of the Politburo Standing Committee. After a minute of silence for the “martyrs of the revolution” and the national anthem, Xi Jinping took the stage for a long and awaited speech.
His first point is that of the fight against Covid. The historic Congress, in fact, comes at a “critical moment for the country and for the world”, but Xi proudly claimed what he had done for the construction of a “modern socialist country”. In five years, he said, his government has achieved results in the fight against poverty, in diplomacy and national defense, and in health. “We have protected people’s lives – he stressed -. China has achieved positive results in coordinating the control of epidemics, combining it with economic and social development”.
The Chinese president then referred to the Hong Kong uprisings, noting that the former British colony is now “ruled by patriots” who have taken it “from chaos to order” after the uprisings. “The choice of having only one country and two systems has proved to be the best for Hong Kong and Macao and must be respected in the long term,” he said. Xi Jinping then mentioned Taiwan, another crucial point for Chinese politics. “We have demonstrated our ability to oppose separatism, independence and foreign interference – he stressed -. We want peaceful reunification, but we will not give up the right to use force if necessary”. “Reunification will certainly be achieved”, he concludes amid applause.
“We will take all necessary measures to stop the separatist movements. The Taiwan issue is a business of the Chinese people and it is up to the Chinese people. We are seeking peaceful reunification, but we will not give up force if necessary. The complete reunification of the motherland must be achieved.”
In his hour and 45-minute speech, Xi also mentioned a number of priorities for the years to come. According to the Chinese president, the defense of “national dignity” is fundamental, but always taking sides “against hegemonism, unilateralism, expansionism and protectionism”. All defects that Beijing attributes to the United States, the main antagonist in the crisis with Taiwan.
Despite the condemnation of Western expansionist aims, Xi Jinping nevertheless announced improvements for the Chinese Armed Forces with a view to creating a new “world-class” army. “We will accelerate the construction of a global army and strengthen its strategic deterrence capacity.” The Party’s control over the security forces will be increased to ensure “that they always act in the same line as the Party.” “Efforts must continue to modernize the People’s Liberation Army, so that it can better protect national sovereignty, security and national development interests.”
The Chinese president then said that the government will raise the salaries of low-income workers to expand the middle class. The Party wants to “regulate the order of distribution of wealth and the mechanism of accumulation”. He then promised openings on the economic front. “China – he explained – will be an important trading partner and an important destination for foreign investments.
Central themes of Xi’s speech, including energy and the environment. China will “promote low-carbon green development” and improve pollution controls. The promise is also to use coal cleaner and more efficiently. “Ecological and environmental protection has undergone a historic change – he said between applause -. The skies are bluer, the mountains are greener and the water is clearer. We will actively participate in global governance on climate change”. Yet the Red Dragon is one of the first countries in the world for pollution and CO2 emissions.