Security dilemma can be overcome through joint efforts, says expert

Yan Xuetong (R), the head of the Institute of Modern International Relations of Tsinghua University, at the press conference of the 3rd World Peace Forum. Photo: Ding Yi/

Tsinghua University will hold a non-governmental international security forum where former politicians, think tank leaders, international security strategists and diplomats from home and abroad will discuss ways to overcome security dilemma, said an international relations expert in Beijing.

"The core problem of international politics is about security dilemma, which is an unchangeable objective law. But it can be overcome through concrete efforts that will lead us to common security," said Yan Xuetong, the head of the Institute of Modern International Relations of Tsinghua University, at the press conference of the 3rd World Peace Forum, also known as the Tsinghua Forum, which will be held on June 21-22.

Mr. Yan characterized the World Peace Forum as an idiosyncratic arena, which will give a golden opportunity to the invited retired state heads and diplomats, international relations experts and security strategic thinkers to freely express their own views on international security, saying that the forum is totally different from official international security summits where attendees always make remarks on behalf of their governments.

"The World Peace Forum is not a political show because all the attendees can speak their minds," said Mr. Yan, adding that the forum will offer a platform for the attendees to put forward their innovative thoughts that can be applied to international security cooperation.

At the press conference, Mr. Yan criticized some countries for using lack of mutual trust as an excuse for not participating in international security cooperation. "Mutual trust is not the prerequisite of international security cooperation, but the result of long-term, positive cooperation."

Despite the fact that most domestic security forums are off the record, the World Peace Forum will open all the conferences, roundtable meetings and penal discussions to media.

"The high transparency of the forum comes as China is increasingly enhancing its transparency on international security policies," said Mr. Yan, adding that the foreign attendees are eager to know about how China's think tanks and international strategists see international security amid high tensions between China and its neighboring countries over the disputed East China Sea and South China Sea.

According to Mr. Yan, Yukio Hatoyama, former Japanese prime minister, will attend the forum for the third consecutive year, which triggered skepticism from an Asahi Shimbun reporter, who said that the invitation of a pro-China Japanese politician will weaken the objectivity of the forum and that the speech Mr. Hatoyama delivered at last year's forum did not reflect the mainstream Japanese view.

At the First World Peace Forum held in 2012, then Vice President of China Xi Jinping proposed the concept of common security in his opening speech, which is now basically recognized by most developing countries, but not by the United States, said Mr. Yan, adding that the majority of attendees are from developing countries.

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