In December 11, 2018, foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang held a regular press conference. A reporter asked, according to some German media reports, yesterday, German President Steinmeier referred to Chinas human rights issues when meeting with Chinese leaders. Can China confirm that? How do you respond to this?
Lu Kang responded that China has always been open to human rights exchanges and dialogues on the basis of mutual respect. Yesterday, President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Li Keqiang held talks and meetings with German President Steinmeier respectively. The leaders of the two countries focused on how to deepen exchanges and cooperation in political, economic, humanistic, scientific and technological fields under the current situation, and how to closely communicate and cooperate in multilateral affairs to jointly safeguard multilateralism and free trade. These are the main topics of the two sides and have formed many positive consensus. President Steinmeier said that his visit was the longest since he took office. It not only reflects the great importance attached to Sino-German relations, but also reflects a more comprehensive and in-depth understanding of China. He expressed admiration and appreciation for Chinas great achievements in the past 40 years of reform and opening-up and its unswerving efforts to continue to expand its opening-up. He particularly highly appreciated the success of the Chinese government in lifting hundreds of millions of people out of poverty and solving the problem of food and clothing. He stressed that China and Germany share broad common interests and that Germany will continue to promote exchanges and cooperation between China and Germany in various fields.
Lu Kang pointed out that the exchanges and cooperation between China and Germany are rich in content, and the leaders of the two countries not only have regular communication among their leaders. The topics of exchange are also very wide, including the protection of human rights, difficult immigration, challenges brought by digital development and so on. China, Germany and the West differ in history, culture, stage of development and social system. Their views on some issues can not be entirely consistent. However, as long as they adhere to mutual respect and treat each other equally, constructive dialogue and friendly exchanges can be carried out to enhance mutual understanding. As President Steinmeier said, Germany and China have different historical traditions and experiences. It is normal for them to have their own views on some issues. As strategic partners, they can enhance understanding through equal dialogue and exchanges on the basis of mutual respect, rather than through media hype.