|Endeavors to build global hope: Chinese premier's 60 hours in Copenhagen|
Editor's note: Xinhua correspondents Zhao Cheng and Tian Fan, who accompanied and covered Premier Wen Jiabao's tour to the
* What did Premier Wen tell world leaders?
* Why was Premier Wen missing from a mysterious small group meeting called by the
* How was Copenhagen Accord finally reached after long, tough negotiations?
BEIJING, Dec. 25 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao left Beijing for the climate summit in Copenhagen, Denmark on Dec. 16, when pessimism and disappointment were simmering among negotiators, who, after about 10 days' bargaining, found a bridge to span their rift seemed a mission impossible.
"It will be a tough task. Now I can feel how heavy my duty is to attend the meeting on behalf of the Chinese government," Wen told reporters aboard his plane en route to
Nevertheless, Wen said he was confident that the talks would bear fruit. "As so many world leaders are gathered there, I believe there should come some achievements," he said. "No matter what the result is,
WHIRLWIND TALKS WITH WORLD LEADERS
Premier Wen's schedule on Dec. 17 was almost fully occupied by meetings with world leaders.
During the meeting with Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen, Wen suggested that in order to achieve an outcome for the conference, all parties should stick to the consensus they had reached while leaving differences for future negotiations. "Now it seems to be the only way out. If we can reach a resolution of such a kind, it could well be an achievement of the talks," Wen said.
In his talks with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who expressed that a fruitless conference would be unacceptable, Wen proposed to formulate a political document that may reflect the consensus of different parties.
"It is unrealistic to hope to fill in the gap between nearly 200 countries in less than two days.
He told the UN chief it was important to fix on the political aspiration to deliver confidence and hope to the world.
The drafting of the final document must be transparent while concerns of different parties, especially developing countries, must be taken into consideration, Wen stressed.
Wen's talks with Ban was followed by the meeting with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. They agreed that the two major developing countries must firmly stand with other developing countries to safeguard their common interests.
The Chinese premier's meeting with representatives of island countries and underdeveloped nations lasted for over two hours, the longest during his stay in
Wen said although
In addition, China would continue to assist those countries to cope with climate change, Wen told President of the Maldives Mohammed Nasheed, Prime Minister of Grenada Tillman Thomas, Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and Sudanese Presidential Assistant Nafie Ali Nafie.
Wen's whirlwind negotiations that afternoon involved British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama.
The three industrialized countries, though ambitious in leading international cooperation on climate change issues, lacked understanding of developing countries and had therefore raised some unrealistic and unfair requests.
Once again, Wen urged all parties to stop pointing fingers at each other or bargaining at the critical moment of the talks. He said
On the transparency issue in self mitigation actions, Wen said
He stressed that developing countries' major tasks in eradicating poverty and developing economy should not compromise the environment. But their development also required the developed world's understanding and support, both financially and in technology.
After the meetings, Wen immediately instructed Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei to hold a press conference to brief the world media on the talks, a move to fulfil his commitment to transparency.
At a banquet hosted by Danish Queen Margrethe II on Dec. 17 evening, Premier Wen was told that the
During his talk with a foreign leader, Premier Wen learnt
Why was the Chinese delegation not informed? Premier Wen felt quite astonished and was vigilant after he confirmed the meeting with other foreign leaders.
During the conference, similar situations occurred when some countries proposed a draft resolution through clandestine negotiations, which went against the principle of openness and transparency and triggered strong discontent.
Premier Wen took the incident seriously and came back to his hotel immediately to call an emergent meeting to study countermeasures for the situation.
On behalf of the Chinese delegation, Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei came to the meeting and expressed strong dissatisfaction to the convocator's ulterior motive for not informing
He said that the meeting should be transparent and no participants should impose their will on others. Any scheme in darkness would probably lead to a fruitless summit.
On the second morning of his stay in
Both of the leaders held that no matter what happened, the two countries should keep in close touch and firmly defend the interests of developing countries.
However, neither the host Danish Prime Minister Rasmussen nor the U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was present even at
People were guessing what was the matter, but no one came to explain the reason for the delay.
Premier Wen made a prompt decision to propose a meeting of the BASIC countries. The leaders just sat around a tea table in the hall and began exchanging views.
It was until 11:30 that Rasmussen announced the opening of the summit.
Premier Wen was the first to deliver a speech, titled "Build Consensus and Strengthen Cooperation to Advance the Historical Process of Combating Climate Change."
In the speech with 2,000-odd Chinese characters, Wen made it clear that what
At the end of his speech, Wen made a serious promise.
"It is with a sense of responsibility to the Chinese people and the whole mankind that the Chinese government has set the target for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. This is a voluntary action
"We will honor our word with real action. Whatever outcome this conference may produce, we will be fully committed to achieving and even exceeding the target."
Premier Wen's speech won long-time applause at the conference venue. Some foreign leaders congratulated Wen on his speech with handshaking.
LAST MINUTE EFFORT
After U.S. President Barack Obama's speech, Premier Wen held talks with him in a meeting room just behind the summit venue.
The two leaders agreed that the participating countries of the conference should achieve a political resolution as soon as possible and continue cooperation on climate change.
As soon as the talks ended, Wen asked members of the Chinese delegation to inform the Group of 77 and other BASIC countries of the Sino-American talks, aiming to speed up negotiations between developing and developed countries.
Developing and developed countries discussed the final document, but failed to make any progress as a result of divergence of views, even when the
Some countries were drafting announcement of the conference's possible failure, and certain foreign leaders even made irresponsible criticism against
It was Premier Wen who played a key role in the last-minute attempt to exchange ideas and reach consensus.
Wen believed that it was impossible to reach a legally binding agreement at that time, while no country was willing to be responsible for the failure if the conference yielded no result in the end.
"As long as there is hope of one percent, we should not give up and must instead make 100 percent of effort," he told the Chinese delegation.
Wen decided to meet other leaders of the BASIC countries again and make a final attempt.
At the same time, President Obama said he wanted to have a second meeting with Premier Wen. Wen agreed to meet him after the BASIC meeting ended.
The BASIC countries leaders agreed that the
They agreed to reach consensus on key issues first and then negotiate with the
Wen urged to keep contact and enhance cooperation with African countries, the Group of 77 and small island states.
At 6:50 p.m., when the BASIC leaders were reviewing their final common position, President Obama showed up, which was a bit of surprise for those in the room although the scheduled time for the Sino-American meeting was over.
Obama stopped with one foot outside the gate and asked Premier Wen with smiles if he should wait outside or join the discussion.
Premier Wen stood up and politely invited Obama to join them. Obama accepted and walked around the room to shake hands with all the people present, before taking a seat to the left of Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and opposite to Wen.
The BASIC leaders knew very well the
Premier Wen said efforts should be made to adopt a resolution in order to affirm the achievements of the meeting and build consensus. He then made clear the position of BASIC countries on several key issues.
Obama briefed the leaders of BASIC countries about the latest U.S. stance, saying both sides were very close on the wording of these issues, before the leaders of the five nations started the negotiations.
While the leaders were discussing, journalists were anxiously waiting outside. Some of them even took photos through the window.
Applause were heard before long as the BASIC countries finally reached agreement with the
The BASIC countries discussed with some other countries while the U.S.-Europe talks went on. A few more countries reviewed the draft later.
An hour later, news came that the parties concerned agreed on the draft and were ready to submit it for a voting at the conference. It was already nine hours after the scheduled conclusion of the conference.
The achievement was a result of joint efforts by all the participating countries other than out of the will of one or two countries.
There have been different interpretations on the outcome over the past few days, but people have to recognize that international cooperation to cope with climate change has moved a step ahead on the right direction, through the joint efforts of the international community. It delivered hope and confidence to the world.
In this process,
In a recent interview with Xinhua, Wen said
He called for efforts to seek new progress from the international cooperation on climate change and make due contributions to human endeavor to deal with climate change.