Liu Zhongmin: The fight against religious extremism could be another highlight of the minister's visit
Publish time: 2016-05-13 Browsing times: 14

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (2nd R) meets with Yemeni Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Abdulmalik al-Mekhlafi (2nd L) in Doha, Qatar, May 11, 2016. Wang and al-Mekhlafi are in the Qatari capital for the 7th Ministerial Meeting of China-Arab Cooperation Forum, which is scheduled to open on Thursday.(Xinhua/Meng Tao)

Ministerial discussions in Doha, Qatar Thursday on anti-terrorism cooperation and interconnectivity are expected to elevate China-Arab ties, experts said.

Under the theme, Working together on the Belt and Road Initiative and deepening China-Arab strategic cooperation, the seventh CASCF ministerial meeting will promote interconnectivity and intercommunication, cooperation on production capacity to promote industrialization in Arab states, as well as cultural exchanges to build a solid friendship between the two sides, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said at the opening ceremony, news site reported on Thursday.

Around 200 representatives from 22 Arab countries will discuss the future of China-Arab relations with a Chinese delegation led by Wang.

The biennial meeting, held on the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the Arab world, will lead relations to a more fruitful future, Wu Sike, China's former special envoy to the Middle East, told the Global Times.

Production capacity cooperation and exchanges on new energy and aerospace will be highlighted in the meeting, as well as cooperation on financing, as seven founding members of the China-proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank are Arab states, said Wu.

In addition, since many Middle East countries are threatened by the Islamic State while China also faces challenges from religious extremism, the fight against religious extremism could be another highlight, Liu Zhongmin, a professor at the Middle East Studies Institute of Shanghai International Studies University, told the Global Times.

China will hold a roundtable meeting on inter-civilization dialogue and eradicating extremism within the CASCF framework, Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a speech at the Arab League headquarters in January.

China will also organize exchange visits by 100 renowned religious leaders, enhance cooperation on cyber security and block the online transmission of audio and video materials which promote violence and terrorism, added Xi.

Wang on Wednesday held separate meetings with his counterparts from Algeria, Comoros, Lebanon and Yemen on promoting ties between China and the Arab world. Wang is also scheduled to visit Qatar and Tunisia.

The minister's visit will focus on implementing the initiatives and goals mentioned in China's first policy document to the Arab states and to consolidate the achievements reached during Xi's Middle East visit in January, said Liu.

Wu added that they will discuss how to effectively implement the fruits attained by both sides in the face of political turbulence and transformation in the region.

Xi's historic five-day Middle East tour led to 52 cooperation agreements, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

Xi also announced loan programs to develop the Middle East, including $20 billion in joint investment funds..

Source: Global Times