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People & Points
Print Edition> People & Points
UPDATED: October 20, 2008 NO. 43 OCT. 23, 2008

Ambassador Starts UN Mission

Zhang Yesui, former Chinese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, has been appointed China's permanent representative to the United Nations, said a Xinhua News Agency report on October 11.

According to a news release on the UN's website, Zhang presented his credentials to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on September 26. Zhang replaced Wang Guangya, who finished his five-year tenure in September.

The 55-year-old Zhang is China's 10th UN ambassador since the country resumed its legal seat at the world body in October 1971. This is also the second time for Zhang to work with China's UN mission where he was first secretary and counselor in 1988-92.

Since 2003, Zhang had served as vice minister of foreign affairs, in charge of policy research and issues concerning Europe.

As China holds the rotating presidency of the UN Security Council in October, Zhang, who presides over most of the council's meetings, plays a pivotal role in global multilateral diplomacy in his inaugural month at the UN.

The new Chinese envoy is a graduate of the London School of Economics (1975-76).

Prolific Writer Proposes Prize

Prestigious Chinese poet Yu Kwang-chung said on October 10 that it's time for the establishment of a new literature prize to help Chinese writers worldwide gain international fame they deserve.

After this year's Nobel Literature Prize was announced to be awarded to French Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clezio, Yu, who allegedly has been nominated for the prize several times, said that people should have a clear understanding of the cultural barriers that prevent Chinese writers from being honored.

Currently in the 18-member judging panel of the Nobel Literature Prize, only one person, Swedish Goran Malmqvist, speaks Chinese, but all of them know at least one European language, according to Yu.

In the more than 110 years' history of the Nobel Literature Prize, the only Chinese laureate is Gao Xingjian, a Chinese French, in 2000.

Since the Chinese language is the mother tongue of more than 1.3 billion people around the world, Yu suggested a prize geared to only those who write in Chinese would better recognize and promote their literary achievements.

Yu, 80, is one of the most recognized contemporary Chinese poets, writers and critics. He left the mainland and settled in Taiwan with his family in 1950. Over the past decades, he has published 17 poetry collections and 12 prose collections. His 1971 masterpiece, Homesickness, is considered the best poem to express Taiwan people's nostalgia for their homeland and family members on the mainland.

Senior CPC Member Disciplined

Yu Youjun, a former governor of north China's Shanxi Province, has been expelled from the

 Central Committee of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC), said a communiqué of the committee after its plenum on October 9-12. The 202-member central committee is the Party's decision-making body.

Delegates to the meeting also confirmed a decision made by the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee on September 5 to subject Yu's Party membership to a two-year probationary period, according to the communiqué.

Yu, 55, was vice minister of culture in September 2007-September 2008, after having held several high-ranking local government posts, including mayor of Shenzhen, vice governor of Hunan Province and governor of Shanxi Province.

According to reports in Nanfang Daily City News and Jinan Daily, Yu was sanctioned for his role in a power-for-money scandal that involves the construction of several local highways in Shenzhen.

"With tools at our disposal, we are confident and capable of prevailing over the overall difficulties and challenges."

Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan, speaking to visiting U.S. Senator Chuck Hage on

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