Al Jazeera: The friendly relations between China and Arab countries and the entire Middle East region have had a long history. China has been committed to working with the rest of international community to find solutions to related problems. But on the issue of the Middle East, in particular the issue of Syria, it seems that there is a wide gap between China's position and the position of many other countries in the world. I want to ask what exactly China's position is on the issue of Syria and what is China's consideration behind its efforts surrounding the Syria issue. How does China see the Arab people's demand for democracy? Is China concerned that its relations with the people of Arab countries will be affected?
Wen Jiabao: On the issue of Syria, China has no selfish interests and does not seek to protect any party, including the government of Syria. We make our own right judgment and determine our own position on this issue on the basis of facts.
The position of the Chinese Government on the Syria issue is four-fold. First, the lives of civilians must be protected. The killing of innocent civilians must be immediately stopped by all parties in Syria. Second, China respects the Syrian people's demand for change and legitimate aspiration for their own interests. Third, China supports the special envoy jointly appointed by the UN and the Arab League in his political mediation. Fourth, China has deep sympathies for the humanitarian plight of the Syrian people. We have participated in the relevant international humanitarian aid and we will continue to do so. At the same time, China has, through its own ways, worked intensively on all parties in Syria for the early launch of political dialogue.
We believe that the demand for democracy of the Arab people must be respected and truly responded to. And I believe this trend towards democracy cannot be held back by any force.
There have been friendly exchanges stretching up to 1,000 years between China and the Arab countries. It has been China's consistent position to respect the Islam civilization and support the just cause of the Arab people. The two sides have been engaged in productive cooperation in a wide range of areas. Not long ago, I visited Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar. I feel that there is consensus between China and Arab countries, including the Gulf countries, that cooperation has been the mainstay of relationship between the two sides. As the Arab world undergoes changes, I believe the position of the Chinese side will win the understanding and trust of the Arab countries. And eventually, relations and exchanges between China and the Arab world will strengthen.
China National Radio: The public has paid very close attention to the Wu Ying case in Zhejiang. Mr. Premier, do you think Wu Ying should be sentenced to death or not? And how do you see the difficulty of private capital in investment and financing?
Wen Jiabao: I have noted that much public attention has been paid to the Wu Ying case. On this matter, I want to make the following points: First, a thorough study must be conducted concerning the legal aspects of private lending and the principles that should be observed in handling such issues so that there will be clearly defined legal reference for private lending.
Second, the Wu Ying case must be handled on the basis of facts and in strict accordance with the law. I have noted that the Supreme People's Court has issued a circular, requiring that all cases concerning disputes over private lending must be properly handled in accordance with the law, and the Supreme People's Court has taken a very cautious attitude towards the Wu Ying case.
Third, the case shows that the development of private finance cannot yet meet the requirement of economic and social development in China. The Chinese companies, small and micro enterprises in particular, need massive funds, yet the banks are not able to meet their capital needs, and there is a large amount of idle private capital.
We should guide and allow non-governmental capital into the financial sector, and we need to bring private lending into the open and make it standardized. We need to encourage its development and, at the same time, put it under strict supervision. I can tell you here that the People's Bank of China and the China Banking Regulatory Commission are actively considering launching a comprehensive reform of private finance on a trial basis, with Wenzhou being one of the places for this reform.