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Commentary: CICA holds the key to security issues

By Zhongsheng (People's Daily Online)    10:07, April 28, 2016

The fifth foreign ministers’ meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) is being held in Beijing on April 27 and 28. Chinese President Xi Jinping will attend and address the opening ceremony. Focusing on "promoting security through dialogue," the meeting will map out the agenda of CICA for the next two years.

In May 2014, as CICA’s rotating president, China successfully held the Shanghai Summit and proposed a new vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security in Asia. During the two-year presidency, China has encouraged and fostered the implementation of the consensus reached at the Shanghai Summit, as well as continuously enhancing the institutional capability of CICA.

As a result, the international influence of CICA has gradually expanded. All member states have agreed to extend China's presidency to 2018, which shows their recognition of China's efforts.

Especially since Asia became a major driving force for global economic growth, the international community has attached high importance to regional security. Nowadays, peace and mutually beneficial cooperation are the order of the day in Asia, and disputes are settled through negotiation and consultation throughout the region. People have noticed that, despite being faced with challenges, security cooperation in Asia is gradually improving.

However, the general security pattern in Asia is still challenged by problems left over by history, such as territorial disputes and geopolitical games. For quite some time, certain countries outside the region have been fanning up threats as an excuse to strengthen military alliances and undermine regional stability. In addition, non-traditional security challenges in areas such as finance, energy, food, and cyberspace have also emerged in Asia.

All in all, there is still work to be done on the overall project of security in Asia. The truth is that some unhealthy tendencies are still alive in the region, such as the Cold War mentality, a tendency toward confrontation and looking for imaginary enemies. Of course, history has already revealed the ultimate negative outcomes of all these habits. Nevertheless, it's clear that security in Asia is still in the stage of "out with the old, in with the new."

For that reason, the Asia security concept proposed by China during the CICA Shanghai Summit has a lot of promise. At its core, the concept is a vision of security for all and by all. The pursuit of common security acknowledges a new reality of interwoven interests. Disputes can be resolved peacefully when cooperation is guaranteed, which also enhances mutual trust and long-term stability in the relationships between all parties.

CICA is the regional security forum with the widest coverage and most member states in Asia. With increasing demand for security cooperation, CICA has a bright future, ripe for development. In the mean time, China stands ready to help implement the pursuit of common security and push for forward progress throughout Asia. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Hongyu,Bianji)

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