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Democracy that works bears diversity, rooted in own soil: experts

Xinhua, December 08, 2021 Adjust font size:

Experts at an international forum on democracy believe there is no one-size-fits-all model for democracy in the world, and the way to realize democracy cannot be uniform considering different national conditions, calling for exchanges and dialogues on the topic in the principle of mutual respect and equality.

From Saturday to Sunday, guests from more than 70 countries and regions, including representatives of government departments and international organizations, experts and scholars, discussed the common value and diversity of democracy and shared their views on China's whole-process democracy, in person or virtually, during the International Forum on Democracy: The Shared Human Values.

"I do believe that even two countries which appear to have the same culture, the cultures do differ. Therefore, [with] the diversity in place, the applicability of democracy has to be compromised to that diversity," said Humphrey Moshi, director of the Center for Chinese Studies, University of Dar es Salaam of Tanzania.

Echoing Moshi's remarks, Charles Romain Mbele, head of Scientific Department of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute, an African and African-American research institute, noted that the history of political ideas shows that in this area there is no one standard that would be imposed on everyone as if the only world were the Western world.

Whether a country is a democratic one should be judged by its people, not dictated by a handful of outsiders, attendees pointed out.

The failure of exporting "American-style democracy" provides evidence that endogenous democracy is more vigorous than the imposed one, said Zheng Yongnian, director of the Advanced Institute of Global and Contemporary China Studies of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shenzhen.

Democracy is not a decorative ornament, but an instrument for addressing the issues that concern the people. China's whole-process people's democracy serves to better represent the people's will, protect their rights and fully unleash their potential to create, according to a white paper on China's democracy.

"Overall, socialist democracy in China is not limited to formalism," said Kostas Gouliamos, former rector of European University Cyprus, adding that it pursues humankind's common values of peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom.

The practice of democracy is most reliable and effective when it is rooted in its own country, said Xie Fuzhan, president of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).

The forum that opened Saturday in Beijing is scheduled to be held in three phases, with the second and third phases slated for Dec. 9-10 and Dec. 14-15, respectively.

The event was hosted by the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council Information Office and co-organized by the CASS, China Media Group and China International Publishing Group.

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