But, in general, they have been weaker when compa

red with urban areas, Zhang said. “Problems such as loose organization and lack of ability to provide public ser

vices and governance exist in some rural areas, which urgently requires intensified efforts,” he said.

In recent years, some rural areas have improved governance throu

gh innovative measures based on the reality of their situation, Zhang said.

The ministry released 20 model cases on better governance in rural areas on Wednesday.

They cover aspects such as improving connections and interactions between vil

lage officials and residents, facilitating public participation in decision-making, and

finding solutions to eliminate social problems, such as extravagance and waste in hosting events.

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I must stress that Taiwan is an inseparable part of Chin

na, and the one-China principle is the foundation of China-US relations and an international consensus,” Shao said.

“The US side has conducted a series of negative rhetoric and actions regarding the Taiwan questi

on, violated the one-China principle and the three China-US joint communiques,” he said.

“This has undermined China’s sovereignty and security, sent a seriously wrong message to

Taiwan secessionists, and disrupted regional peace and stability,” Shao said, adding that China must, and will be, reunified.

“If anyone tries to separate Taiwan from the mainlan

d, the Chinese military will adamantly protect its territorial integrity at all costs,” he said.

As for the South China Sea, Shanahan accused China of undermini

ng freedom of navigation and overflight in the region, and militarizing the local islands.

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Xi calls for bolstering reform and developmentforts to p

Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, called

on Wednesday for further efforts to prevent and eliminate major problems in the nation’s reform and

development against the backdrop that uncertainties and instabilities are on the rise.

Xi, also Chinese president and chairman of the Central Military Commission, made the remarks while presiding over a key meeting

of the Central Committee for Deepening Overall Reform. He is the director of the committee.

Saying China is facing profound changes in its reform and development against the backdro

p of increasing external uncertain and unstable factors, Xi said the country must maintain a strategic focus.

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While educational evaluation has an important role of

f guidance, such roughly generated and lame evaluations cannot objectively reflect the real

conditions of schools, and have severely disrupted education activities, the statement said.

The MOE will therefore continue to regulate such acti

vities in accordance with law and regulations, according to the statement.

The China Earthquake Administration pledged to enhance its earthquake detection c

apability as it rolls out an experimental project in the country’s tremor-plagued southwestern region.

The administration has established over 360 new monitoring stations in the China Seismic Experimental Site, which spans Sichuan

and Yunnan provinces, since construction of the project was launched about one year ago, Zheng Guoguang, vice-m

inister of emergency management and head of the administration, told a news conference on Friday.

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gdong province, his administration has established a resea

arch institute to accelerate the development of new apparatuses for underground detection that could reduce interference from human activity.

“We will also explore carrying out observational experiments

in wells from hundred of meters to 1,000 meters deep, and through scientific drilling that will p

enetrate active earthquake faults to gain more information about underground structures,” he said.

Currently, 13 countries have been involved in the project, includ

ing Russia, Egypt and Algeria, and 17 domestic research teams, including one from U

niversity of Science and Technology of China, have started research on the site, Zheng noted.

The site will “offer research teams with observa

tion equipment, support for outdoor observation and data sharing services”, he said.

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More nurses sought to treat elderly population

Health authorities will redouble their efforts to train nurses in eldercare as the

proportion of older people in the popula

tion expands and tens of millions of

people struggle with disabilities, a senior health official said on Wednesday.

Jiao Yahui, deputy chief of medical administration and supervision at the Nation

al Health Commission, said there are not

enough nurses to cope with the growing needs of the country’s elderly.

A regulation on the training of healthcare workers and standards of service is being drafted.

It is expected to boost the number of nurse’s aides, Jiao said ahead of

International Nurses Day on Sunday.

The nurse’s aides will complement the work of full-fledged nurses to meet the demand for services for the elderly, she said.

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This issue is similar to the environment. External critics

ent. External critics of China don’t appreciate that Chinese themselves realize there

are issues to be addressed. They are doing so. These developments should be encouraged.”

President Xi Jinping, who spoke at the Second Belt and Road Foru

m for International Cooperation in Beijing recen

tly, listed areas in which China will improve the environment for foreign investment.

The president said the nation will work hard to create a business environ

ment that respects the value of intellectual prop

erty, will improve the legal system for IPR protection at all levels, will strengthen law enforcement and pr

otection for the legitimate rights and interests of foreign IP owners and will bar the

forced transfer of technology, improve protection of trade secrets and crack down on infringement.

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As an important power promoting human developm

ent and progress, international communicators should further play up their special role in advancing unders

tanding, deepening friendship and expanding cooperation in the fast-changing world. They should push world pro

gress in the right historical direction while promoting exchanges among civilizations and mutual learning.

First, we should act as promoters of exchanges among human civilizations. The mutual depende

nce, exchanges and learning of different civilizations give shape to the abundant and colorful world tod

ay. As the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity points out, cultural diversity “is the common herit

age of humanity”. The diversity of human civilizations is a basic characteristic of the world, as well as a so

urce of the progress of humanity. In turbulent international situations, to maintain world peace, development and pr

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Xi said China’s moves to boost opening-up follow from

 an independent choice based on the objective need of the country’s reform and development.

This is helpful in promoting high-quality growth, meeting the people’s need

s for a better life and promoting peace, stability and development of the world, he said.

China also hopes that other countries will create a good investment environment, treat Chinese enterpris

es, students and scholars equally and create a friendly environment for their normal international exchange activities, Xi said.

Xi pledged to take stronger measures to promote international cooperation in protecting intellectual pro

perty, which he said is not only crucial to protecting the legal rights of companies but also to promoting high-quality growth.

China will enhance policy coordination with the world’s major economic entities and j

ointly promote the robust, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth of the global economy, he said

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Facts and figures: Belt and Road Initiativetive, proposed

The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by China in 2013, aims at building a

trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the an

cient trade routes of the Silk Road to seek common development and prosperity.

Let’s take a look at some key figures about the initiative.

A new remake of Peking Opera classic Farewell My C

oncubine is expected to premiere for opera lovers in Beijing in late May.

A representative opera piece of the late Chinese theater

mogul Mei Lanfang, Farewell My Concubine tells a love

story based on the legend of Xiang Yu – the warlord of the ancient Chu Kingdom – an

d his beloved consort Yu. Xiang lost a battle for the throne, and Yu committed suicide with his sword.

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