Cui Tiankai

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I always believe the real foundation of China-U.S. relations is the friendship and mutual understanding between our peoples.
Of course we safeguard our sovereignty and independence. There's no doubt about that.
There is no place for McCarthyism in the 21st century, and no one can push the two peoples back to the era of estrangement and isolation.
In principle, we should not fight a war we are not prepared for, a war we are not sure of winning, a war of anger and attrition.
The United States will not willingly accept the rise of a great power with a very different social system, ideology, cultural traditions and even race.

Cui Tiankai (Chinese: 崔天凯) (born October 1952) is a Chinese diplomat who served as the Chinese Ambassador to Japan (2007-2009) and the United States (2013-2021).


  • We are always open for international cooperation. We are always committed to multilateral cooperation. But frankly, any such cooperation will have to be based on equality, mutual benefit and mutual respect. Otherwise, how can people cooperate with each other if they don't treat each other as equals? This is not our problem. This is the problem for Western countries. They still have to learn how to treat other countries, other races, other civilizations as equals. That's their problem, not our problem.
  • Indeed, climate change is a global challenge. We are certainly ready to take part in international cooperation on climate change. But honestly, political climate also has an impact on the efforts to deal with the natural climate. When there is insufficient mutual confidence, mutual trust, mutual respect, how can we work together to confront such a global challenge? I don't think it's quite possible. Even for climate change itself, how will the U.S. and Western countries face their historical responsibility ever since industrialization? How will they shoulder their responsibility to help the developing countries to deal with this challenge? They still have to take actions. They still have to prove they are seriously committed. They are earnest about their international obligations. They still have to prove their sincerity.
  • I always believe the real foundation of China-U.S. relations is the friendship and mutual understanding between our peoples. So this is the root of state-to-state relations and there's such an infusion among American states, cities and towns and ordinary Americans to learn more about China, to develop friendship with Chinese people, to facilitate cooperation between our two countries.
  • First of all, China's development, China's growth, has been made possible by the hard work of the Chinese people and our more than 40 years of reform and opening-up. This is a historical fact. To say otherwise is against the facts and certainly not fair to the Chinese people. Internationally, China always stands for the basic norms governing international relations as embodied in the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter. We always support multilateral institutions, the international system centered on the United Nations, including, for instance, the WHO, the WTO and a number of others. We already contribute more troops than other permanent members of the Security Council to the UN peacekeeping operations. We are already contributing a great deal to the global economic growth. We're ready to do more.
  • The fact is, whenever you have a more involvement by the United States, you have greater instability, anywhere in the world. Look at the Middle East, look at some other places like Latin America. It's so obvious that when you are "rebalancing," or "pivoting," whatever the word might be, then there's more instability in that region.
  • Climate change is a global challenge. So what is at stake is the global community's interest, not only the interest of our two countries. Of course our two countries have to play an important role in international cooperation to confront this challenge. But this is a true global challenge.
  • China is still developing country. Although we have made great achievements over the years, but we know the challenges are still there, huge challenges. We have to continue to work hard to solve all of these domestic problems. We have just lifted everybody out of absolute poverty, but we have to make sure they will not fall back into poverty. This is a very huge challenge. We're also doing our best to improve the environment, to respond to issues like climate change and all these natural disasters. We do have a large number of natural disasters in China, like the situation in the United States. So we are still focusing our efforts on domestic economic and social development to give people the possibility of a better life. Internationally, we stand for building together with other countries a global community with a shared future.
  • Throughout its 100-year history, the Communist Party of China has always upheld its mission to pursue happiness for the people and rejuvenation for the nation. As China enters a new development stage, we will follow a new development philosophy and foster a new development paradigm. We are deepening reform and further opening up. We are striving to eliminate absolute poverty, protect the environment and address problems resulting from unbalanced and inadequate development. Everything we do is to meet the people’s aspiration for a better life, not to challenge or displace any country. We always believe in harmony in diversity between countries and in a community with a shared future for mankind.
  • It is distressing to see how much damage has been done to our people-to-people exchanges. More and more Chinese students and scholars are questioning if the United States is still an ideal place for education; if academic research can survive political persecution. More and more Chinese tourists are worrying if their visa application would be rejected due to their political belief. More and more Chinese companies are wondering if the “level playing field” touted by the U.S. truly exists.
  • As the first country to sign the United Nations Charter after World War II, China has always dedicated itself to safeguarding and contributing to the international order. Over the past 75 years, China, the United States and the world have all gone through tremendous changes, and the growth of our bilateral relations has made significant contribution to the wellbeing of the two peoples and to world peace, stability and prosperity.

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