China's efforts to restore stability in the riot-hit Xinjiang region in northwest China has won credit from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), which recognizes that stability in Xinjiang benefits all nations in the region.
The SCO, a regional organization founded by China and five other countries that lie close to the Xinjiang region -- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan -- said in a statement that it believes the measures the Chinese government is taking can restore peace and order there.
The SCO's support came for good reason.
The statement demonstrated that the SCO member states understood well that the situation in Xinjiang bears closely on that of the entire surrounding region, and stability in Central and South Asia would in turn promote the enduring peace and common prosperity of all countries there.
Historially, Xinjiang was known for its key status on the world-famous Silk Road, which once connected the East and West through trade and cultural exchanges.
Trade and culture on the Silk Road flourished in the Han and Tang Dynasties, when stability reigned. At other times, when turbulence gripped Xinjiang, business declined and cultural exchanges stalled, affecting even the Central Asian region.
The Silk Road was rejuvenated in the current time of economic globalization. Since China's reform and opening-up, Xinjiang has developed into a critical region for landway trade between Central, South and East Asia.
Xinjiang's trade volume with surrounding nations exceeded US$14 billion in 2008, and the regional capital Urumqi has become most prosperous city in Central Asia.
All of these achievements are based on long-lasting social stability. Decades of stability in Xinjiang have not only contributed to the peace and well-being of all ethnic groups living there, but also boosted the development of Central and South Asia.
As Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon once put it, China's Xinjiang, which borders Tajikistan, has played a key, huge and direct role in developing bilateral ties in such fields as economy and trade.
The three forces of terrorism, separatism and extremism, however, have been proven counterproductive to social stability and people's well-being. While using media to cause confusions, the forces have also resorted to violence that undermined social stability.
Some Central Asian countries such as Pakistan and Afghanistan also fell victim to these evil forces. The countries that have been plagued by these forces witnessed chaos and saw their development procrastinated.
The evil forces have also crossed the border to spread violence and terrorism by setting up training camps. Links have been discovered between these forces and the recent riot in Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang.
The fight against these evil forces will greatly benefit all Central and South Asian countries as evidence has shown that the "three evil forces" are detrimental not only to Xinjiang but also to the whole region.
(Xinhua News Agency July 16, 2009)