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China International Search and Rescue team members carry a supposed survivor during a simulated rescue training, Beijing, Feb. 26, 2010 (AP photo by Andy Wong).

How China Balances Its Policy of Noninterference With Growing Humanitarian Relief

Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017

For the past decade, China’s involvement in international humanitarian relief has steadily risen as it has sent its people, supplies and support to nations around the world. While these humanitarian efforts have often been framed as a tool of Chinese foreign policy, China has also increasingly integrated itself into the international humanitarian relief system. In an email interview, Miwa Hirono, a Japanese scholar who has written extensively on Chinese humanitarian and peacekeeping operations, explains how Beijing’s approach to disaster relief has evolved and how China continues to balance its policy of noninterference with its desire to provide assistance abroad.

WPR: How big a domestic priority has disaster relief been for the Chinese government, and what progress has been made in recent years? To what degree have perceived shortcomings in disaster relief fueled popular discontent and criticism of the government? ...

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