Wang Jiarui Leads a Delegation to Take Part in Activities in Commemoration of China-U.S. Ping-Pong Diplomacy in the U.S.

2017-09-26 23:31:44   China Soong Ching Ling Foundation

To commemorate the 45th anniversary of Ping-Pong diplomacy, CPPCC Vice Chairman and CSCLF Chairman Wang Jiarui led a delegation to participate in a series of activities in the U.S. from September 15 to 20.

On September 15, Wang met with Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres at the UN headquarter in New York and then with former U.S. Secretary of State Dr. Kissinger. They exchanged ideas on each other’s concerns. 

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Wang Jiarui meets with UN Secretary-General António Guterres

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Wang meets former U.S. Secretary of State Dr. Kissinger.

Ping-Pong Diplomats in rematch

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the normalization of relations between China and the U.S. In 1971, Ping-Pong Diplomacy started a new chapter of U.S.-China relations. During their stay in the U.S., the delegation visited the UN headquarters, Chicago Community Ping-Pong Club and Michigan University. They reviewed how Ping Pong broke the ice between China and the U.S. and looked to a better future. 

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The delegation mad their first stop at the UN headquarters and had friendly matches with their U.S. counterparts. 
 

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Ping Pong brings new vitality to people-to-people exchange between China and the U.S. 

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Head of the delegation Wang Jiarui, CPPCC Vice Chairman and CSCLF Chairman, said at the commemoration that the encounters between Chinese players and their counterparts on the U.S. team in 1971 and 1972 initiated the normalization of bilateral relations between the two countries. After more than 40 years, China and the U.S. are both at a critical stage of development, and U.S. President Trump will soon visit China. Just as the continuous improvement of Ping Pong players’ skills, the U.S.-China relations will advance in a sound and steady manner. The delegation aims to enhance mutual understanding and trust between the two peoples through Ping Pong and hopes young people will carry forward the idea of friendly cooperation and mutual benefits. Wang also quoted what President Nixon said when he welcomed Chinese players, “There are always winners and losers in a match, but friendship between U.S. and Chinese people never lose.” The audience applauded warmly.
 

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Mark S. Schlissel, president of the University of Michigan, welcomed “Ping-Pong Diplomats” from the CSCLF and Chinese Table Tennis Association, as well as famous Chinese Ping Pong athletes. In his speech, President Schlissel reviewed the history of the increasingly close tie between the University of Michigan and China since a former president  of the university visited China in 1880. “When looking back at our history, I firmly believe our two countries will embrace a more prosperous and constructive future,” he said. 

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Tang Wensheng, advisor of the delegation and former CSCLF Vice Chairperson, is an eyewitness of Ping Pong Diplomacy. In front of the students at the University of Michigan, she narrated that history with vivid pictures: after Zhuang Zedong, a famous Ping Pong athlete, made friends with his U.S. counterpart Cohen, two state leaders with great historical vision and an open mind initiated the normalization of bilateral relations between China and the U.S.

In 1972, Jan Berris received the visit of the Chinese Ping Pong athlete team in U.S. Then she was named as Vice Chairman of National Committee on US-China Relations. Berris used to be Dr. Kissinger’s advisor and assistant and played a long-term role in advancing U.S.-China relations. She frankly admitted that it was Chinese people’s kindness that opened the heart of American people. “The commemoration is inspiring. I believe this is a fresh start. The U.S.-China relations will have a better future.”

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Witness of Ping Pong Diplomacy Liang Yeliang and Jan Berris, Vice Chairman of National Committee on U.S.-China Relations
 

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CSCLF Vice Chairman Jing Dunquan said, “The friendly tie between U.S. and China cannot be maintained without the efforts of top leaders and people from all walks of life in the two countries and the engagement of non-governmental groups and educational institutions. In the new era, young people should carry on strengthening the friendly relations.”

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People-to-people exchange enhances mutual understanding and trust between China and the U.S. As the idea of friendly cooperation and mutual benefit has been widely accepted by young people, the community of common destiny for all mankind is emerging. 

(Source: General Office)

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    The celebration hosted by CSCLF is intended to promote the consensus reached at the recently concluded Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and facilitate people-to-people exchange among different countries.
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