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Xi Jinping's inspection tour of Xinjiang
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Xi Jinping's inspection tour of Xinjiang

Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, recently inspected the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in northwestern China and visited officials and the general public of different ethnic groups.

Xi stressed efforts to resolutely implement the CPC Central Committee's decisions, and fully and faithfully carry out the plans and the policies of the CPC for the governance of Xinjiang in the new era. Focusing on the overarching goal of ensuring lasting social stability, security and enduring prosperity, we should seek steady progress in our work, further extend reform and opening up in all respects, promote high-quality development, coordinate COVID-19 response with economic and social development, and balance development and security imperatives. On our journey in the new era, we will endeavor to build Xinjiang into a beautiful place that is united, harmonious, and prosperous, with an advanced culture, a happy life for all and sound ecological environment.

From Tuesday to Friday, Xi's itinerary included Urumqi, Shihezi, and Turpan cities, and he made fact-finding trips to a university, an international land port area, a residential community, a museum, a village, and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC), among other sites. During his trips, Xi was accompanied by Ma Xingrui, secretary of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Regional Committee of the CPC, and Erkin Tuniyaz, chairman of Xinjiang regional government.

On Tuesday afternoon, Xi went to Xinjiang University, his first stop. He visited the museum on the university history and the center for fostering a strong sense of community for the Chinese nation to learn about the university's history and development and its efforts in cultivating capable personnel and promoting the exchange and communication between people of different ethnic groups. He was also briefed by the students returning from field studies on what they had learned.

Our country is a unified multiethnic country, with the Chinese people of all ethnic groups united in diversity being a salient feature, Xi noted. Creatively adapting Marxist ethnic theory to China's specific realities, we have formulated ethnic theories and policies characterized by ethnic equality and unity, regional ethnic autonomy, and shared development and prosperity, so that all ethnic groups have enjoyed equality, unity and progress in real sense under the socialist system. 

Our ethnic theories and policies are sound and effective. We should stay committed to the correct and Chinese way to address ethnic issues, continue to enrich and develop the Party's ethnic theories for the new era, advancing research on the fundamental issues concerning the community for the Chinese nation. China, a country with ethnic unity, is invincible and will have a bright future, and our Second Centenary Goal is bound to be achieved and so is the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, Xi said.

Xi stressed that the fundamental task of education is to foster virtue. He urged the university to uphold the socialist direction of education and nurture a new generation of capable young people with moral grounding, intellectual ability, physical vigor, aesthetic sensibility and work skills for the socialist cause. The university should highlight its unique strengths, foster high-calibre faculty, enhance its innovative capacity in scientific researches and make more progress in making itself a world-class university and developing world-class disciplines. He also expected students of the university to strive for the future of socialism with Chinese characteristics and the Chinese nation.

Xi's next stop was the Urumqi International Land Port Area where he was provided with relevant information and through real-time video link watched how the Urumqi China-Europe Railway Express Hub, the land ports at the Alataw Pass and Horgos operated. He also chatted with people working at the freight train service desk and other on-site staff.

Xi stressed that with the country opening wider to the world, the western region being further developed, and the Belt and Road Initiative being materialized, Xinjiang has changed from a relatively closed inland region to a frontier of opening up. The region should develop the core area along the Silk Road Economic Belt, incorporate its regional opening-up strategy into the overall layout of the country's westward opening up, innovate the system for an open economy, speed up the construction of major opening-up corridors, so that it can make better use of international and domestic markets and resources and actively serve and integrate itself into the country's new pattern of development. He also urged local leading officials to continue to prevent both inbound cases and domestic resurgences of COVID-19, uphold a dynamic zero-COVID policy and try their best to adopt targeted response measures and reduce inconvenience in people's everyday life.

On Wednesday morning, Xi visited the community of Guyuanxiang in the Tianshan District of Urumqi where more than 95 percent of the residents were ethnic minorities. He walked into the public service center, the community service center, the dance room and the children's reading room, and chatted with residents there. Having watched a traditional cultural performance by local children with keen interest, he noted that the education of China's fine traditional culture should start with children and be sustained so that it will be developed as part of people's life in an imperceptible and formative manner. Such education will contribute to building a firm foundation for passing on China's fine traditional culture through generations, he said.

Shown around the living room, bedrooms and kitchen at the home of Ablet Tursun, a Uygur resident, Xi sat down with his family for a friendly conversation. He stressed that ethnic unity is the lifeline for people of all ethnic groups in China and all ethnic groups in Xinjiang are inseparable members of the family of the Chinese nation. We should value the current stability and unity in China with all 56 ethnic groups standing together, maintaining firm resolve, making pragmatic and concerted efforts for achieving the Second Centenary Goal under the Party's leadership.

Xi noted that community work concerns thousands of families. Party organizations at the primary level should play an active role, and more attention should be paid to the work at the primary level. It is imperative to take into account the needs and expectations of residents of all ethnic groups, help them solve problems and address their difficulties, promote the brotherhood and mutual help among people of all ethnic groups, build a beautiful home and create a better future together.

When Xi was leaving the residential community, people of various ethnic groups sang and danced in their ethnic costumes to show their sincere love and esteem for him. In return, Xi wished everyone a prosperous career and a happier life.

Then Xi arrived at the Museum of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. He visited the Exhibition of Xinjiang Cultural Relics, watched a show of the Kirgiz ethnic epic “Manas” and chatted cordially with the performers. The epic has been designated as an intangible cultural heritage.

Chinese civilization is extensive and profound, has a long history stretching back to antiquity, and is composed of outstanding cultures of all its ethnic groups, Xi said. He called for further study on the history of the community for the Chinese nation and its unified pattern of diverse ethnic cultures.

He added that we should make full and effective use of the historical facts, archaeological objects, and cultural heritage on the exchanges between various ethnic groups in Xinjiang, to prove that this region inhabited by many ethnic groups has been an integral part of China since the ancient times, and that various ethnic groups in Xinjiang have been important members of the big Chinese family in weal and woe.

Efforts should be made to better preserve and pass on the intangible cultural heritage, and to carry on the excellent traditional cultures of all ethnic groups, Xi said.

On Wednesday afternoon, Xi went to the Shihezi City under the Eighth Division of the XPCC and visited the Museum of Military Reclamation of the XPCC.

On the first floor of the museum, Xi met with representatives of the three generations of workers from the XPCC. He said that the XPCC has made indelible contributions to promoting Xinjiang's development, ethnic unity, social stability and border security.

The spirit of patriotism, dedication, hard work and enterprise the XPCC people have developed is an important part of the fine traditions of the CPC, and such spirit must be carried on.

Then Xi left for a fact-finding trip to the 143rd Regiment of the Eighth Division. At a cotton planting base of the Agricultural 1st Company, Xi checked on cotton growth, and asked farmers and agricultural technicians in the field about cotton planting, marketing and their family income, among others. At a peach orchid of the 9th Company, Xi expressed his appreciation of what the company has done to encourage and support its employees to develop farming industry, eco-tourism and agri-entertainment over the years, which has helped increase the income for the employees.

With its high level of agricultural mechanization, large-scale agricultural development and industrialized operation as well as its strengths in the production of grain, cotton, oil, fruits and vegetables, the XPCC should play an even greater role in safeguarding China's food security and securing supply of key agricultural products, Xi pointed out.

The CPC Central Committee's policies to support the XPCC must be implemented to the letter so that its strength can be given full play, Xi said.

He also demanded strengthening agricultural science and technology and equipment support to develop competitive agricultural products and industries in accordance with local conditions, and promoting the development of green agriculture and animal husbandry.

In the 143rd Regiment Huayuan Town Square, Xi had a cordial conversation with officials and workers from the XPCC. Xi stressed that the strategic role of the corps is irreplaceable. It is imperative to speed up the corps' reform, deepen the integration of the corps with local areas, build a pastoral homeland featuring harmony between urban and rural areas. The functions and roles of the corps should be given full play as a stabilizer for securing national borders, a melting pot for uniting people of all ethnic groups and a demonstration area for developing advanced productive forces and culture, so that the corps will be further consolidated in its strengths in maintaining stability and safeguarding borders in the new era, Xi said.

During his inspection tour in Turpan City on Thursday, Xi visited the Grape Valley to see a display of unique local fruits and learn about the city's efforts to develop grape-oriented distinctive industries and push for culture-tourism integration. Xi underlined that Turpan's beauty and fertility, along with its wealth of fruits, are a gift from nature. It is necessary to properly handle the relationship between socioeconomic development and environmental protection, promote the integrated development of culture and tourism, and create industries that enrich the people, Xi said.

Then Xi went to the Xinchengximen Village in Xincheng Area, Ya'er Town, Gaochang District of Turpan, visiting its public service center and a agricultural product processing enterprise. In the village square, when the general secretary arrived, people gathered around with cheers to greet him. Having pointed out that no ethnic group should be left behind in the building of a modern socialist country in all respects, Xi called for efforts to consolidate and expand what has been achieved in poverty alleviation, make solid progress in rural revitalization, bringing prosperity, a happy life and beautiful environment to rural residents. Xi also wished locals a more prosperous life and children healthy development.

In Turpan, Xi also inspected the Jiaohe Ruins, a world cultural heritage site and also the best-preserved, longest-lasting and largest relics of a clay-built city across the globe. Xi emphasized that the ancient city of Jiaohe served as a main traffic artery along the Silk Road, witnessing the over 5,000-year history of the Chinese civilization and is of huge historical value. Xi regarded it as necessary to strengthen the protection, utilization of cultural relics, and the preservation, passing-down of cultural heritage, to constantly expand the global influence of Chinese culture, and boost national pride and cultural confidence.

On Friday morning, Xi heard work reports from the regional Party committee, the regional government and the XPCC, and acknowledged the achievements made in all the work related to Xinjiang. He expressed the hope that the Party committee and the government of the region will unite all the officials and the people as one and lead them to forge ahead determinedly, and take solid steps to do a better job in all the fields.

Xi noted that with the overarching goal of Xinjiang work as the focus, efforts must be made to advance the fundamental, basic and long-term imperatives to ensure enduring social stability and long-term security in the autonomous region. We must constantly explore the effective approaches to fully implement the policies of the CPC for the governance of Xinjiang in the new era, and materialize what the CPC Central Committee requires in concrete actions and practical work, so as to ensure that work related to Xinjiang will forge ahead towards the correct direction, Xi said.

Xi said that the people's support is vital for ensuring Xinjiang's lasting stability. We must stay united and look into the future, giving full play to the role of all officials and the people in ensuring stability, boosting development and promoting reform. We must mind closely the opinions and views of people from all walks of life. We must ensure that work on safeguarding stability is law-based and done on routine basis. We must communicate Xinjiang to the world in a multi-level, comprehensive and multi-dimensional manner, do a better job in letting the world see Xinjiang with their own eyes, and tell Xinjiang's stories well, Xi said.

Xi stressed that we must develop a strong sense of community for the Chinese nation and encourage more exchanges and interactions among different ethnic groups. All the ethnic cultures in Xinjiang have their roots in the Chinese civilization. We must educate and guide all officials and people to have a correct understanding of Xinjiang's history, especially that of its ethnic groups, so as to uphold the right perspective of the Chinese nation's history and strengthen the national psyche of the Chinese nation. We must take further steps to advance the project that aims to create a strong sense of community for the Chinese nation among young people. We must promote integration among people from all ethnic groups in all areas such as culture, economy, society and psychology so that they will be closely united like the seeds of a pomegranate that stick together, Xi said.

Xi noted that the capability of governing religious affairs must be improved to ensure the healthy development of religions. We must better uphold the principle of developing Islam in the Chinese context and provide active guidance for the adaptation of religions to socialist society. We must train a team of Party and government officials who are adept at the Marxist view on religion, familiar with religious affairs and competent to engage in related work, foster a group of religious figures who are politically reliable, have noble characters and religious accomplishments and can play their role at critical times, and foster a group of religious researchers who have firm political stand and good academic achievements, stick to the Marxist view on religion and be good at innovation. We must ensure that reasonable demands of religious believers be met and rally them around the Party and the government, Xi said.

Xi pointed out that it is necessary to further cultural development in Xinjiang with promoting the sense of national identity as the focus. Cultural identity is of utmost importance. It is important to have a correct understanding of our history and culture, highlight Chinese cultural characteristics and the visual image of the Chinese nation. We should demonstrate the common features of Chinese culture, and display the historical facts of exchanges and interactions between Xinjiang and various ethnic groups in the rest part of China by developing a particular discourse and other effective vehicles. We should fully showcase the Chinese culture by displaying what can be touched and seen to strike a common chord. We should educate and guide people of all ethnic groups to establish a correct view of country, history, ethnicity, culture and religion, and enhance their identification with the motherland, the Chinese nation, the Chinese culture, the CPC and socialism with Chinese characteristics.

Xi stressed that it's important to have a deep understanding of the close connection between development and stability, between development and people's livelihood, and between development and the will of the people, and make it possible for people to benefit from development achievements. Work needs to be done to accelerate high-quality economic development, cultivate and expand competitive specialty industries and enhance their capabilities to create jobs. Efforts should also be made to align efforts to consolidate the results of the battle against poverty with rural revitalization, and optimize the long-term mechanism for sustainable rural development.

He noted that it is essential to uphold integrated conservation and systematic governance of mountains, rivers, forests, farmland, lakes, grasslands and deserts, facilitate ecology-prioritized development, further the fight against pollution, and strictly toe the line in ecological conservation. Xinjiang should expand its opening up, forge a bridgehead for opening up westward, and advance the building of the core area of the Silk Road Economic Belt.

Xi noted that we must exercise full and rigorous self-governance over the Party and do a good job in training a contingent of competent officials. We must adhere to the underlying principle of being strict, take enhancing the Party's political building as the overarching principle to promote the building of all the other sectors of the Party and tighten the Party's political discipline and rules. We must reinforce and expand the achievements made in studying the history of the Party, educate and guide all the Party members and officials to strengthen their ideals and convictions and pass on the fine traditions of the Party.

Endeavors are needed to consolidate grassroots networks, and make Party organizations at the primary level in various fields strong forts. Party organizations at the primary level should improve their conduct and remove bureaucratism and pointless formalities. The leading groups of Party organizations and government departments should be streamlined, and the role of officials of ethnic minorities be brought into full play, he said.

Xi stressed that the XPCC needs to adapt to new developments, meet new demands, so as to play a greater role in the work related to Xinjiang. The XPCC and local areas should be better integrated in development, build major infrastructure jointly, and promote integration on economic, social, cultural and ecological progress, ethnic unity as well as the development of the official and personnel pool. The two sides need to build infrastructure with joint efforts, share resources, further integration and boost complementation.

Xi said that the work related to Xinjiang is a key issue for the CPC and the whole country, for it is concerned with China's overall development. The CPC needs to perceive the importance of the work related to Xinjiang from a strategic and overall perspective, step up efforts on pairing assistance for Xinjiang, enhance the mechanisms to improve the work related to Xinjiang and set the stage with concrete action for the 20th National Congress of the CPC.

Before listening to the reports, Xi met with representatives of current and retired officials at different levels in the region, leading officials of the XPCC and officials of relevant departments, and representatives of different ethnic groups and sectors, officials working on aiding programs, law-enforcement officers, and patriots of religious circles. Xi, on behalf of the CPC Central Committee, extended sincere greetings to all living and working in the region.

On Friday morning, Xi met with representatives from military officers and troops in Xinjiang, delivering sincere greetings to all members of the military and hailing remarkable achievements of them on keeping the borderline of Xinjiang secure, and stabilizing the region and boosting the development of the region. Xi urged that the military in the region should materialize the CPC's thinking on strengthening armed forces and the military strategies and principles in the new era, and make contributions to long-term social stability in Xinjiang.

Xi left Xinjiang for Beijing on Friday afternoon. People of various ethnic groups gave him a warm seeing-off along roads with applause.

Ding Xuexiang, Liu He, Zhang Youxia, Chen Xi, He Lifeng, and other leading officials of the central Party and government departments accompanied Xi during the inspection tour.

XinhuaShen Yi

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