From Xinhua News Agency, April 21, 2023. Complete text:

Shanghai – China sees it as its solemn duty to defend the authority of the UN and uphold the post-war international order, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang said on Friday [April 21].

Qin made the remarks in a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the Lanting Forum on Chinese Modernization and the World in Shanghai.

Recently, there have been some absurd rhetoric accusing China of challenging the so-called rules-based international order, of unilaterally changing the status quo across the Taiwan Strait through force or coercion, and of disrupting peace and stability across the Strait, Qin said.

“Such claims go against basic common sense on international relations and historical justice. The logic is absurd, and the consequences dangerous,” Qin said.

He said having suffered among the heaviest casualties in the world anti-fascist alliance during WWII, and as a founding member of the UN and the first country to sign the UN Charter, China sees it as its solemn duty to defend the authority of the UN and uphold the post-war international order.

“We have the best record in abiding by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, international law and the basic norms of international relations. We need no reminder by certain countries or groups of countries,” Qin said.

Fair-minded people can see full well who is exploiting and discarding the UN at its own will, who is disrupting the international order, and who is engaged in hegemonic, bullying and high-handed practices, he said.

Taiwan has been an inalienable part of China’s territory since ancient times, and both sides of the Strait belong to one and the same China. This is Taiwan’s history, and it is also the status quo of Taiwan, Qin said.

Taiwan’s return to China is a component of the post-war international order, written in black and white in the Cairo Declaration and the Potsdam Proclamation, he said.

It is not the Chinese mainland, but the “Taiwan independence” separatist forces and a handful of countries attempting to take advantage of “Taiwan independence,” that are disrupting international rules, unilaterally changing the status quo, and undermining stability across the Strait, Qin said.

Their definition of rules, status quo and stability is in fact aimed to hollow out the one-China principle, achieve “peaceful division” of China, and ultimately tamper with the history of WWII, subvert the post-war order, and trample on China’s sovereignty, he said.

“This is unacceptable to the 1.4 billion Chinese people. China will not lose any part of its territory that has been restored. And the established post-war international order will not be upended,” he said.

Qin said it is right and proper for China to uphold its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“We would like to make it clear to those who seek to sabotage international justice in the name of international order: The Taiwan question is the core of the core interests of China, and there will be no vagueness at all in our response to any one who attempts to distort the one-China principle; we will never back down in face of any act that undermines China’s sovereignty and security. Those who play with fire on Taiwan will eventually get themselves burned,” he said.