His Excellency Yi Xianliang,
The Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China,
Distinguish Sri Lankan and Chinese invitees,
Ladies and gentlemen

As the President of the Sri Lanka-China Friendship Association, the pioneer China friendly organization inaugurated in 1950, I thank Your Excellency and the Chinese Embassy for inviting me and a delegation of my Association to take part at this meeting.

I am also thankful to the Embassy for inviting me to give a speech about my understanding on ” Peace and Development.”

The Sri Lanka-China Friendship Association as a Think Tank who studied political principles and perspectives of China, continuously for 65 years, firmly believe that theories and historical achievements of Chinese leadership would be essential to objectively analyse Peace and Development of contemporary international practise.

Today we discuss the three major issues of the victory of the war of resistance and the present achievements in the fields of Peace and Development. But, 78 years ago, way back in May 1937, Chairman Mao Zedong analysed the interconnection of the war, the peace and the development in a nutshell, in his book of military writings, ” On Protracted War.”

Chinese people were facing a big controversy after the second Japanese invasion in 1931. The question whether the Chinese people could face and defeat powerful Japanese invader was raised even within the Communist Part of China.The guide line of defeating the Japanese imperialism was finally laid down in Chairman Mao Zedong’s great work, ” On Protracted War” , which fundamentally solved the strategic problems of the ” Victory of the Chinese People’s War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression”. After laying out the strategy of Protracted War, Chairman Mao analysed peace in the light of the sacred war of resistance. He said, ” the protracted nature of China’s anti-Japanese war is inseparably connected with the fight for perpetual peace in China and the whole world. Never has there been a historical period such as present, in which war is so close to perpetual peace.”

Chairman Mao Zedong further said that, ” The war between China and Japan, …. will take an important place in this war for perpetual peace. The liberated new China of the future will be inseparable from the liberated new world of the future. Hence, our War of Resistance against Japan takes on the character of a struggle for perpetual peace.”

Chairman Mao Zedong said that the Chinese people would, ” overthrow Japanese imperialism and create a new China of freedom and equality. They will most certainly be making a tremendous contribution to the struggle for perpetual world peace. This is no vain hope, for the whole world is approaching this point in the course of its social and economic development, and provided that the majority of mankind work together, our goal will surely be attained in several decades.”

Today, that vision of Chairman Mao Zedong has turned out to be the vision not only of Chinese people but of the people of the entire world. Even after the defeat of American imperialism in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, still the world is far from eternal peace. In Middle East, Africa, and in various other places, regional and civil wars are being still waged. We in Sri Lanka achieved peace after defeating a separatist civil war of 30 years, of course mainly with the assistance of China. Even in future there will be just wars and unjust wars. People will struggle against unjust wars using various forms of struggles, because what people need is peace, national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. And peace will pave way for development. Peace and development remain the underlying trends of our times.

For the vast majority people of developing countries, for many people in the countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America, poverty is the day to day major issue of life and development is only a dream far- far away. World economic growth is overshadowed by growing factors of instability and uncertainty and the imbalance in global development has widened. Still there are signs of emerging hegemonism, power politics and interventionism . All those tendencies are harmful to peace and development.

The United Nations and all countries must call for promoting equality, to respect sovereignty, to avoid intervention and hegemony and also to avoid plundering of economic resources of other countries. Achieving lasting peace is the only guaranty for development.

We are happy to note that People’s Republic of China is devoted to world peace. 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China held a few years back, in November 2012, upheld the need of world peace and development.

President Xi Jinping said on 15th May last year, at the 60th Anniversary of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, that, ” the Chinese want to live in harmony and share common development with the people of other countries so that together we can seek , safeguard and benefit from peace. …. China will continue to pursue peaceful development and encourage other countries to follow peaceful development.” President Xi Jinping, further said that, ” China will develop itself through maintaining world peace and promote world peace through its own development.”

Your Excellency, permit me to repeat President Xi’s important words.” China will develop itself through maintaining world peace and promote world peace through its own development ! ”

I believe that the last line of President Xi Jinping quoted above, is an international guideline to uphold peace and development, for all other powerful countries to follow.

Thank you.