On September 1, 2021, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi had a phone conversation with Diplomatic Counselor to French President Emmanuel Bonne at the latter's request.
Wang Yi said, China-France relations have been developing healthily and steadily in general under the strategic guidance of the two heads of state. He hopes that the two countries will strengthen high-level exchanges, deepen practical cooperation in various fields and promote the steady development of bilateral relations to a new level. China is happy to see the European Union (EU) grow stronger and maintains that China and the EU are partners rather than rivals. The two sides' common interests far outweigh the differences. Strengthening dialogue and cooperation between China and the EU is in the interests of both sides and the world. France is a major country with independent tradition and strategic thinking. He hopes that France, considering the common and long-term interests of China and the EU, will take the opportunity of its upcoming EU rotating presidency to push China-EU relations to eliminate interference, overcome difficulties, rise steadily and regain vitality.
Wang Yi said, the United States has recently forced its intelligence community to carry out origins tracing of COVID-19, which was an obvious anti-science act and a typical example of politicizing the origins tracing. Its purpose is to shift the blame for its own anti-pandemic failure to China. The international community should continue to resist and oppose it.
Bonne said, France is committed to developing France-China relations and is ready to strengthen high-level exchanges with China and push for the resumption of bilateral cooperation and personnel exchanges in various fields against the backdrop of regular pandemic prevention and control. France will take its rotating EU presidency as an opportunity to promote EU-China cooperation in public health, environment, climate, trade and others fields. France believes that the origins tracing should be conducted scientifically to avoid the recurrence of another pandemic. It's a pressing task for the international community to strengthen solidarity, deepen cooperation on COVID-19 treatment and vaccine distribution, and promote the early recovery of the world economy. France appreciated China for providing a large number of vaccines to the international community and hopes that France and China will carry out cooperation in Africa.
The two sides also exchanged views on the situation in Afghanistan. Wang Yi said, we should learn three lessons from the situation in Afghanistan: First, it is unacceptable to seek hegemony, and no matter how strong a country is, it should respect other countries, as well as fairness and justice. Second, military intervention is unacceptable, and political solutions to hot issues should be upheld. Third, wishful thinking of "democratic transformation" is unacceptable, and each country's development path, which is suited to its national conditions, should be respected.
Wang Yi said, the United States suddenly withdrew its troops from Afghanistan, but it cannot shirk its responsibility. What is pressing now is to provide urgently needed economic, livelihood and humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan, so as to make up for the huge damages done to its national development and people's well-being. Effective measures should be taken to help Afghanistan achieve a smooth transition and avoid a wave of refugees and migrants that will bring bitter consequences to neighboring and European countries. It is also necessary to get rid of the old habit of unilateral sanctions. It's unwise and hardly effective to freeze Afghanistan's foreign exchange reserves in the United States and exert pressure on Afghanistan at every turn.
Bonne said, France and China share common interests in maintaining peace and stability in Afghanistan and France is ready to strengthen coordination with China within the frameworks such as the United Nations Security Council to promote peace and stability in Afghanistan at an early date.