People across Taiwan Straits called on to jointly achieve complete reunification
President Xi Jinping has reaffirmed China's resolve to curb "Taiwan independence" separatist activities and safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity while calling upon people on both sides of the Taiwan Straits to work together for national reunification and rejuvenation.
Observers and analysts said Xi's televised speech, delivered on Saturday at a commemoration ceremony in Beijing of the 1911 Revolution, was of monumental significance and a gesture of unshakable resolution to reunify and revitalize the nation.
Xi reiterated that reunification by peaceful means best serves the interests of the Chinese nation as a whole, including Taiwan residents, saying that the nation will adhere to the basic policies of peaceful reunification and "one country, two systems" and uphold the one-China principle and the 1992 Consensus.
People across the Straits should "stand on the right side of history and join hands to achieve the glorious cause of the nation's complete reunification and rejuvenation", said Xi, who is also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee.
"The Taiwan question arose out of the weakness and chaos of our nation, and it will be resolved as national rejuvenation becomes a reality. This is determined by the general trend of Chinese history, but more importantly, it is the common will of all Chinese people," he said.
He underscored that the Chinese nation has a glorious tradition of opposing separatism and upholding unity, warning that those who forget their heritage, betray their motherland and seek to split the country will come to no good end. "They will be disdained by the people and put on trial by history," he said.
The president also warned against external interference in the Taiwan question, saying that no one should underestimate the resolve, will and ability of the Chinese people to defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity. "The complete reunification of our country will be and can be realized," he said.
The speech marked the second time in three months that Xi has renewed his pledge for national reunification. In a speech delivered on July 1, he vowed to resolutely smash any "Taiwan independence" plot.
Liu Xiangping, a professor on Taiwan studies at Nanjing University, said Xi's speech has pointed the way, and will offer fresh impetus to exchanges and integrated development across the Straits.
He explained that national reunification and rejuvenation are two goals that reinforce each other. "The increase in China's national strength will create better conditions for the reunification, while the reunification will also provide a better environment for the achieving of China's second centenary goal," he said.
Wang Shushen, an associate professor at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of Taiwan Studies, said the commemoration of the 1911 Revolution will help refresh the common memory of compatriots on the both sides of the Straits and boost their emotional connection.
"Taiwan compatriots should realize the island's future lies in reunification and national rejuvenation. That is also the call of history," he said.
In his speech, Xi hailed the 1911 Revolution, which ended more than 2,000 years of imperial rule in China, as a "towering landmark" in the national journey toward rejuvenation.
He lauded Sun Yat-sen as a great national hero, a great patriot, and a great pioneer of China's democratic revolution, saying that the historic contributions made by Sun and his peers will never fade away.
Meanwhile, Chinese Communists were the most steadfast supporters, loyal collaborators and faithful successors to the revolutionary cause initiated by Sun, he said, adding that under the leadership of the CPC, the aspirations held by Sun and the pioneers of the revolution are becoming reality.
The president expounded on what history has shown to the Chinese people since the Revolution in five aspects. "The past 110 years have shown us that to realize national rejuvenation, the Chinese people must have a strong force to lead us forward, and that force is the CPC," he said.
The CPC was chosen to lead by history and by the people, and its leadership is the very foundation and lifeblood of the Party and the country. It is the crux upon which the interests and well-being of all Chinese people depend, he said.
History has also shown that the path the nation takes is of fundamental importance, and the nation must uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics, deepen reform and opening-up across the board, endeavor to fulfill the people's aspirations for a better life and realize common prosperity for all, he said.
He stressed the importance of the self-reliance of the Chinese people in the course of national rejuvenation and urged stronger unity－a key element for the nation to overcome risks and challenges ahead.
"Through courage and skill, we will overcome all major risks and challenges that may impede our path to national rejuvenation and resolutely safeguard our national sovereignty, security, and development interests," he said.
China will continue to be a champion of world peace, a contributor to global development and a defender of the international order, Xi said.
"Aggression and hegemony are not in the blood of the Chinese people. Our people hope to successfully realize national development, but they also hope to see all peoples of the world leading happy and peaceful lives," he said.
Fernando Lugris, Uruguay's ambassador to China, who attended the commemoration, said Xi's speech was a historic moment, adding that it impressed him as it reaffirmed China's commitment to peaceful reunification.
"There is a very clear accent on the peaceful reunification of China in President Xi's speech, which also celebrated the importance of the republican spirit. The spirit also resonated strongly in my country as well," he said.
Lu Changlin, a cardiologist and a member of the Association for Cross-Straits Health Exchange and Cooperation, who also attended the event, said Xi's speech has boosted the public's understanding of the importance of the 1911 Revolution and national reunification.
"We must continue to establish various open platforms for the development of friendship between people across the Straits so as to enable better mutual understanding and recognition," he said.