New Year's wish: Greener China and safer Europe

Updated: 2015-12-30 08:54

By Fu Jing(China Daily)

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New Year's wish: Greener China and safer Europe

A wind farm in Zhoushan, Zhejiang province. China's investment in clean energy in 2014 hit a record $89.5 billion, accounting for 29 percent of the world's total. [Photo/China Daily]

While wandering on a square in downtown Brussels on a quiet, wintry Christmas morning, I saw some people with lighted candles standing around a high-rise monument. But it seemed only a couple were reading the messages left on the cards with the flowers at the foot of monument.

As I approached the couple, they raised their heads and greeted me with "Merry Christmas". They told me that the night before many people had come to pay tribute to the victims of the Nov 13 terrorist attacks in Paris. After realizing that I was a Chinese, the woman asked me in her broken English whether I was from Shanghai. I shook my head and said that I was from Beijing.

"Peking, pollution ... a lot of ... I know from TV," she said. What she was trying to say is that she knew my city was suffering from smog. She said she had lived with her husband in Paris for years before moving to Brussels a few years ago after retirement. And although it was difficult for her to converse in English, she introduced her city (Paris) by repeating the word "shooting" with gestures.

Her sorrow was evident on her face, and she passed some of it on tome.

Though short and broken, the conversation indicated the serious challenges facing Chinese and Europeans.

In her Christmas address, Queen Elizabeth indirectly mentioned the rising terrorism attacks worldwide by saying: "It is true that the world has had to confront moments of darkness this year." But she encouraged the world to meet the challenges it faces by citing the Gospel of John, which contains a verse of great hope, often read at carol services leading up to Christmas: "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."

Courage and solidarity are indeed essential to fighting terrorism.

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