Peaches and jade of friendship
On Feb 2, an Air Algerie charter flight arrived in Wuhan, bringing 500,000 surgical masks, 300,000 pairs of medical gloves and 20,000 pairs of medical goggles to support the people of Wuhan during the epidemic.
Algeria was among the first batch of countries to provide emergency medical supplies to China. Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune specially sent a condolence letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping noting that the Chinese government has made tremendous efforts to fight against the pandemic and made contributions to ensuring international and regional public health security. He paid close attention to China's pandemic situation and expressed his support to the Chinese people on behalf of the Algerian people and government, and said Algeria will stand together with China at this difficult time.
An ancient Chinese poem goes: "You throw a peach to me, and I give you a white jade for friendship." President Xi also said that a true friend is known in the day of adversity. In the most difficult time of China, many members of the international community gave China sincere help and support. We will always remember and cherish the friendship.
Since the first COVID-19 case confirmed in Algeria, China has upheld the concept of a community with a shared future for mankind and actively supported the Algerian government's fight against the pandemic.
Our efforts were mainly reflected in the following four aspects: First, as the main international aid partner of Algeria, China directly provided emergency medical supplies to Algeria. The Chinese central and local governments, Chinese-funded enterprises including those in Algeria, and overseas Chinese in Algeria have organized multiple batches of material assistance including masks, testing reagents, ventilators, protective suits, medical gloves and goggles to help Algeria fight against the pandemic.
Second, as the main international supplier of medical materials for Algeria, China has assisted Algeria in purchasing medical supplies from Chinese companies. When there was an extreme shortage of medical supplies in the world, China was under pressure producing 75 percent of the global medical supplies, while its domestic production was not yet fully resumed. Under such circumstances, China conducted a lot of communication and coordination for Algeria on the procurement issues, and facilitated the flights of Algerian military aircraft to China to transport the medical supplies back to Algeria.
Third, as the main anti-pandemic partner of Algeria, China has actively shared its experience in combating the coronavirus. We organized four video meetings where Chinese medical experts shared their diagnosis and treatment plan with their Algerian counterparts.
Fourth, as a comprehensive strategic partner, the Chinese government sent an anti-pandemic medical expert team to Algeria. This is of great significance as it was the first such group sent by the Chinese government to North Africa and the Maghreb region.
China and Algeria have set a good example of anti-pandemic cooperation that shows the two countries are trustworthy comprehensive strategic partners, and also fully proves that Algeria is China's good friend, good brother and good partner, and is working together with China to build a community with a shared future for mankind.
The friendly relations between China and Algeria have withstood the test of the pandemic. Recently, President Tebboune said to the media that China is a close friend of Algeria. Algerian Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad also praised the glorious past, solid present and looked forward to an even better future for China-Algeria relations at the Chinese government anti-pandemic materials handover ceremony.
Solidarity and cooperation are the most effective weapons for the international community to fight against the virus. President Xi has emphasized many times that humanity is a community with a shared future, and all countries must unite and cooperate to deal with the pandemic. During the recent 73rd World Health Assembly held via video, the leaders of all countries called for strengthening international cooperation and fighting against the pandemic together.
The famous historian and philosopher Ibn Khaldun living in the Maghreb region in the Middle Ages said that solidarity and cooperation make for path. History has repeatedly shown that humanity is a community with a shared future, and sticking to solidarity and cooperation has always been the right path. Facing the test of the pandemic, the cooperation between China and Algeria have become a model for battling the COVID-19. This will certainly help to overcome the pandemic as soon as possible and build a community of common health for mankind.
The author is the Chinese ambassador to Algeria. The author contributed this article to China Watch, a think tank powered by China Daily. The views do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.