Slovakia is a capitalist country and a member of the European Union and NATO. It was listed as a developed countryby the World Bank in 2006, and it became a member of the Schengen Convention on December 21st, 2007. The ambassador of Slovakia to China,H.E. Mr. Dusan Bella, is an outstanding politician and diplomat. On the afternoon of February 1st, “Witness Friendship” China Home and Abroad News Press 2018 Winter Junior Journalist Delegation had an exclusive interview with the ambassadorDusan Bella.
Ambassador Dusan Bellafirst delivered a welcome speech. He said: “Before you ask me any question, I would also like to ask you a question first. Is Slovakia in Africa?” The junior journalists replied: “No, it is in Europe.”The Ambassador: “Your answer is correct. It is in Europe. Slovakia is located inthe center of Europe, and it is one of the member states of the European Union.”
A junior journalist asked: “Hello Ambassador! You submitted your credentials to Chinese President Xi Jinping and became the Ambassador of Slovakia to China on March 17th, 2017. You are such an outstanding diplomat and experienced politician. Could you please share your understanding and feelings about Chinese culture with us? Thank you!”
The ambassador said: “Thank you for your question. Chinese culture is splendid and profound. I have heard that some of you are good at dancing. Is that modern dance, jazz dance or Chinese folk dance? This is one aspect of culture. Can anyone of you play lute? Lute is also an important symbol in Chinese culture. I really like the sound of a lute. I admit that Chinese culture is long-standing and very rich. So my wife and I traveled to many Chinese cities. We didn't want to stay in the hotels or the conference rooms. We hope to go out and learn more about Chinese culture.”
Another junior journalist asked: “Hello Ambassador! On September 1st, 2017, you lead a duet band of Czech and Slovak artists to visit China and Slovakia Friendship Farm. The musicians from Slovakia taught the students Slovak songs to help children understand Slovak culture from different perspectives. This kind of activity brought new vitality to the cultural exchanges between Chinese teenagers and Slovak artists. We want to ask you: how will you contribute your wisdom and efforts to continue promoting the exchanges and cooperation between young people of China and Slovakia in 2018? Thank you!”
“We are providing all supports for some young Chinese children to study in Slovakia. At the same time, we also invite Slovak students to study in China. In China, we not only need to learn Chinese language, but also to learn Chinese culture andunderstand more about China. Take one of my assistants as an example, he is still a student of Tianjin University. Slovakia and China do have some cooperation in school education, especiallyChina Railway. The company signed a friendship agreement with an elementary school in Slovakia to encourage the students learn some Slovak rhythm as well as Slovak culture. We invite your parents to take a trip to Europe and visit some countries including Slovakia and other countries. I think this would further improve effectiveness of our communication and exchanges.” the ambassador said.
“您好大使阁下！斯洛伐克是欧盟国家, 距离中国很远, 斯洛伐克的学校与中国有什么不同？斯洛伐克的小学生一年有几个假期? 他们会不会有很多的家庭作业？”
“Hello Ambassador! Slovakia is an EU country, which is far away from China. What is the difference in school education system between Slovakia and China? How many holidays do Slovak schoolchildren have per year and do they have a lot of homework like we do?”
The ambassador answered: “Slovakia and China have similar educational systems. For example, summer vacation takes July and August. At the end of January, Slovak students usually receive a certificate, which means that there will be a holiday for one week. During thesesummer and winter holidays, some children in Slovakia will do sports such as skiing and hockey. Slovakia offers 11-year compulsory education for all citizens. Slovak students have their own spare time, and they follow their own interests. After school, they would empty their minds and think. In my opinions, innovation is more important than knowledge.”
At the end of the interview, the ambassador’s wife Mrs. Eugenia Bellovahad friendly exchanges with the junior journalists and signed her signatures for them. Ambassador Dusan Bella really appreciated the excellent interview with the junior journalists, and he personally presented the “Outstanding Junior Journalist” certificates to the junior journalist delegation members. Then, they took photos together and sent their best wishes to China and Slovakia’s everlasting friendship!