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Chinese, foreign experts discuss global co-op on public health security
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20:48, April 03, 2008

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Some 70 officials, experts and scholars from more than 10 countries joined in Beijing on Thursday for a two-day symposium on public health security, discussing measures to cope with threats and challenges and enhance international cooperation.

Margaret Chan, Director-General of World Health Organization (WHO), addressed the symposium in a video speech that health issues are reasonable to be viewed as part of a security agenda both nationally and internationally.

Emerging and epidemic-prone diseases have become a much larger menace under the unique conditions of the 21st century, and the climate is changing with dire consequences for health, said Chan.

She praised China for its ample experience to share in managing new diseases, in reducing poverty and in responding to the dire consequences of extreme weather events on health and economy.

"The world is watching closely as China's role in international development continues to evolve," Chan said.

Xiong Guangkai, chairman of China Institute for International Strategic Studies (CIISS), said in a keynote speech that the threat to the public health security does not only threaten the lives of human being, but also influences the economy, politics, environment and the security of social groups.

He called on countries to heighten the attention to the issue and invest more into it, and give full play to the role of WHO, putting in place and improving the global early warning and emergency response mechanisms.

He also suggested to boost cooperation among all the countries in public health.

Former Canadian Prime Minister Kim Campbell, and Chinese Health Minister Chen Zhu also addressed the symposium.

The symposium, titled "Public Health Security: China and the World", was jointly sponsored by the CIISS and Michael Eric BosmanHotung Foundation of Hong Kong.

Source: Xinhua

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