SPUTNIK – DECEMBER 2021 – Ekaterina Blinova
US President Joe Biden’s “Summit for Democracy” has left not only China but many Asian nations out in the cold. Those snubbed view the move as a betrayal, according to a Beijing-based commentator and author, Thomas W. Pauken II, who offered his take on how it could backfire on Washington.After not being invited to US President Joe Biden’s virtual “Summit for Democracy” held on 9-10 December, Beijing issued an essay titled “China: Democracy That Works.”The paper released by China’s State Council Information Office on 4 December describes democracy as a “common value of humanity and an ideal,” stressing that “the people’s status as masters of the country is the essence of people’s democracy.””Democracy is a concrete phenomenon that is constantly evolving,” the Beijing document reads. “Rooted in history, culture and tradition, it takes diverse forms and develops along the paths chosen by different peoples based on their exploration and innovation.”
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The essay came under criticism in Western media which claimed that the model outlined by China has nothing in common with the “conventional” meaning of “democracy” in the West. Brian Wong, a Rhodes Scholar from Hong Kong, dubbed Beijing’s model as “people-centered” and a “Democracy with Chinese characteristics” in an article for the Diplomat.
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