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Full text of speech by Xi Jinping at Tibet's peaceful liberation anniversary conference
2011/07/21

LHASA, July 19 (Xinhua) -- The following is the full text of the speech made by Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping Tuesday at the conference in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the peaceful liberation of Tibet.

Speech at Conference Celebrating 60th Anniversary Of the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet

19 July 2011

Xi Jinping

Comrades and Friends,

Today, the ancient city of Lhasa has become a city of flowers. The snow-capped plateau has taken on a new look. The people of all ethnic groups in Tibet are chanting merrily to express their happiness and joy. Entrusted by General Secretary Hu Jintao and the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), we members of the delegation from the central government have come to Tibet, bringing with us the profound friendship of people from around the country. We are here to join people of all ethnic groups in Tibet in the grand celebration to mark the 60th anniversary of the peaceful liberation of Tibet.

To begin with, I wish to extend, on behalf of the CPC Central Committee, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), the State Council, the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and the Central Military Commission (CMC), warm congratulations and cordial greetings to workers, farmers and herdsmen, intellectuals, cadres and people from all walks of life and of all ethnic groups in Tibet, and to officers and soldiers of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) garrison, units of the Chinese People's Armed Police Force (PAPF) and public security officers in Tibet. I wish to pay high regards to our comrades and friends who have made contributions to the peaceful liberation and reform and development of Tibet. I also wish to express heartfelt thanks to our compatriots in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, and overseas Chinese and foreign friends who have cared about and supported Tibet's development.

In 1951, the central people's government signed in Beijing with the former local government of Tibet the Agreement on Measures for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet, which declared Tibet's peaceful liberation. This was a turning point of epoch-making significance in the history of Tibet. It was a major event in the cause of liberation and national unification of the Chinese people. The peaceful liberation of Tibet crushed the attempt of external forces to separate Tibet from China. It upheld national sovereignty and territorial integrity, and safeguarded national unification and ethnic unity. It opened the path for the one million serfs in Tibet to stand up and become masters of their own fates and ushered in a bright prospect of prosperity and progress for Tibet.

In the past 60 years, fundamental changes have taken place on this ancient, miraculous land of Tibet. 

Tibet has achieved a leap forward in the development of the social system. The dark, backward feudal serfdom was completely abolished. The one million serfs, who were denied even their basic right of living as a human being, have become masters of the country and society. They have come to enjoy extensive political, economic, cultural and social rights in accordance with the law. Their mindset and spiritual outlook have all changed profoundly. Through democratic reform and with the establishment of the autonomous region, people of all ethnic groups in Tibet have embarked on the bright path of socialism.

Tibet has achieved all-round economic and social development. The establishment of the socialist system and implementation of reform and opening-up policies have greatly unleashed and boosted social productivity in Tibet. The preferential polices introduced by the central government have lent a strong impetus to the economic and social development in Tibet. As a result, Tibet has enjoyed sustained rapid economic growth and achieved remarkable progress in infrastructure building. A host of advantageous industries with distinct local features are taking shape and the eco-environment is being well protected. The fine traditions of the Tibetan culture are preserved and promoted. The advanced socialist culture has become the dominant theme in the society, and sound progress is being made in various social undertakings. Like other regions in the country, Tibet is showing the dynamism of development that points to a prosperous future.

The living standards of the Tibetan people have markedly improved. The income of residents in cities and the countryside has continued to rise. The building of a new socialist countryside anchored on comfortable housing projects is making solid progress. The living environment of farmers and herdsmen and the conditions of farmland and pastoral areas have gone through notable changes. Education, health and other essential public service systems are being improved. The social safety net covering the entire Tibetan population in both cities and the countryside is being put in place. Average life expectancy in Tibet has almost doubled from the level of the early days of peaceful liberation. People of all ethnic groups in Tibet are now marching confidently towards the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

Ethnic unity in Tibet has steadily enhanced. The Party's ethnicity and religion-related policies are being comprehensively implemented in Tibet. The system of regional ethnic autonomy is steadily improving. Cadres of ethnic minority origin are acquiring greater competence. The socialist ethnic relations featuring equality, unity, mutual support and harmony are being reinforced and strengthened. The religious beliefs of the people are fully respected and protected. And the patriotic united front is growing stronger. People of all ethnic groups in Tibet have stood firm in the fight against separatism. They have forestalled separatist and sabotage activities staged by the Dalai group and foreign hostile forces, and firmly safeguarded ethnic unity, social stability and national unification. Working in unity with their fellow countrymen, cadres and people of all ethnic groups in Tibet are fully confident and capable of upholding and strengthening social stability and unity in Tibet.

The achievements made in development over the past 60 years are glorious. The experience gained in the course of development is invaluable. These achievements are attributable to the wise decisions and correct leadership by the Party's three generations of central collective leadership with Comrade Mao Zedong, Comrade Deng Xiaoping and Comrade Jiang Zemin at the core respectively and by the Party Central Committee with Comrade Hu Jintao as the General Secretary in the successive historical periods of development in Tibet. They have come as a result of the unity and hard work of cadres and people of all ethnic groups in Tibet and the strong support and assistance of people of all ethnic groups across the country.

At this very moment, we cherish a profound memory of the martyrs and heroes who have contributed their youth, wisdom and energy to and even made the ultimate sacrifice for the revolution, development and reform of Tibet and for the defence and development of the borderland of our country. Their tremendous contributions and noble character are recorded in the annals of history.

The extraordinary development of Tibet over the past 60 years points to an irrefutable truth: without the CPC, there would have been no new China, and no new Tibet. As long as we stick to the CPC leadership, the socialist system, the system of regional ethnic autonomy and the development path with Chinese and local Tibetan features, Tibet will enjoy greater prosperity and progress and embrace a brighter future.

Comrades and Friends,

For our country, Tibet serves as an important national security screen. It also constitutes an important ecological security screen, a major base of strategic resources reserve and a major production area of special highland agro-produce. It is home for the preservation of a unique culture of the Chinese nation and a major international tourism destination. To do a good job in Tibet facilitates our efforts to thoroughly apply the Scientific Outlook on Development and build a moderately prosperous society in all respects. It serves the need of sustainable development, and the maintenance of ethnic unity and social stability as well as overall unity and national security of the motherland. To accelerate development and maintain stability in Tibet is the strategic decision and explicit requirement of the central government. It also is the strong aspiration and shared responsibility of cadres and people of all ethnic groups in Tibet.

At the fifth central working conference on Tibet in January last year, all-round arrangements were made to promote leapfrog development and long-term peace and stability in Tibet, charting the course of future work in Tibet. At the meeting commemorating the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China on 1 July this year, Comrade Hu Jintao delivered an important speech which took stock of, in a systematic way, the glorious history and basic experience of our Party in the past 90 years and set out the goals and tasks for the Party in the years to come. This important speech is the guiding document we must follow in forging ahead with the great cause of promoting socialism with Chinese characteristics in an all-round way and the great endeavor of building the Party.

It is the ardent hope of the central government that cadres and people of all ethnic groups in Tibet will earnestly study and apply the spirit of Comrade Hu Jintao's important speech on 1 July, thoroughly implement the spirit of the fifth central working conference on Tibet, adhere to the guiding principle of the central government for Tibet-related work, seize historic opportunities, make good use of assistance from across the country, and continue to forge ahead in a hard-working manner. The grand goal is to build a new, socialist Tibet that is united, democratic, prosperous, culturally advanced and harmonious. Efforts must be made to promote leapfrog development and long-term peace and stability, bring about moderate prosperity in all respects by 2020 and deliver a new life of greater happiness for people of all ethnic groups in Tibet.

To speed up development holds the key to resolving all issues in Tibet. We should always commit ourselves to the central task of economic development, the Four Cardinal Principles and reform and opening-up. We should integrate further the central government' s preferential policies with conditions in Tibet, follow the economic development strategy of developing agriculture and industrial priorities and promoting big growth of the service sector, and help Tibet realize leapfrog development along the track of scientific development. We should continue to strengthen basic infrastructure building in the whole Tibet Autonomous Region, steadily improve crop farming and animal husbandry, speed up the development of advantageous industries with local features, improve ecological protection and enhance openness to the outside world, in an effort to improve the self-sustaining capacity supporting Tibet's development.

The economic and social development of Tibet should always aim at safeguarding and improving people's well-being. Our objective is to ensure that people of all ethnic groups in the autonomous region have access to education, employment, medical and old-age care and housing. We should speed up social development on the basis of economic growth, focusing on safeguarding and improving people's well-being, and continue to build a new socialist countryside. We should implement the policy measures prioritizing education, vigorously develop public health and medical services, speed up the building and improvement of a social security system that covers both cities and the countryside, and intensify our efforts to alleviate poverty. All in all, we will work to properly address issues that are cared about most and that concern the immediate interest of people of all ethnic groups in Tibet.

To carry forward the advanced socialist culture is an integral part of the process of fostering the sense of common identity of all ethnic groups in Tibet. We will rally the people around the common ideal of socialism with Chinese characteristics. We will inspire cadres and people in the region with a patriotic national spirit, with the spirit of our times focusing on reform and innovation and the spirit of "older-generation of Tibet" featuring dedication and hard work. We will guide social ethos with the socialist maxims of honor and disgrace, so that the system of socialist core values will be driven home and pursued by the people in the region of their own accord. We should build on and develop the fine traditions of Tibetan culture, following the principle of inheriting through preservation and developing through innovation, in an effort to continue to promote cultural progress in Tibet.

Social stability provides the very basis for leapfrog development and a prosperous life for people of all ethnic groups in Tibet. We should fully implement the Party's ethnicity-related policies, adhere to the system of regional ethnic autonomy, and uphold the theme of all ethnic groups working together in unity for common prosperity. We should stick to the idea that "Han and ethnic minorities cannot live without each other, and different ethnic minorities are inter-dependent on each other", and consolidate and develop the harmony and stability in Tibet, so as to make Tibet a shining example of ethnic unity. We should uphold, consolidate and expand the patriotic united front, and unite people's wisdom and strength to the widest extent possible. We should adhere to the Party's basic religion-related policies, administrate religious affairs in accordance with law, and uphold normal order of Tibetan Buddhism. We should fight against separatist activities by the Dalai group, rely on cadres and people of all ethnic groups, seek long-term policies and take measures that address the root cause, and completely destroy any attempt to undermine stability in Tibet and national unity of the motherland.

The PLA garrison, PAPF units and law enforcement departments in Tibet are staunch forces and loyal guardians protecting national borders, safeguarding the socialist modernization and upholding social stability in Tibet. They should continue to carry forward the fine traditions and work style, fulfill their sacred mission and make further contribution to the leapfrog development and long-term peace and stability of Tibet.

Comrades and Friends,

The current of history moves on. The grand rejuvenation of the Chinese nation is irresistible. The future of Tibet will be even brighter. Let us rally more closely around the Party Central Committee with Comrade Hu Jintao as the General Secretary, hold high the great banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics, follow the guidance of Deng Xiaoping Theory and the important thought of Three Represents, thoroughly apply the Scientific Outlook on Development, and jointly make great efforts to further promote the grand cause of building a new, socialist Tibet.

May our great motherland enjoy prosperity!

May people of all ethnic groups in Tibet enjoy happiness!

Tashi Delek!

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