SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush's son, Neil Bush, pledged Thursday to carry out his father's legacy to take the China-U.S. friendship to a new stage.
"I have a real passion (for US-China relations), as my father did for U.S.-China relations during his entire life," said Bush, founder and chairman of the George H. W. Bush Foundation for U.S.-China Relations, during an event in the Bay Area that launched an initiative to call for international efforts to battle the COVID-19 epidemic.
Bush said he first visited China in 1975 and has since seen China's steady, rapid development.
"I've seen the miracle of hundreds of millions of (Chinese) people being lifted out of poverty，" he said.
He noted the Chinese people and the American people have "so much more in common than what divides us."
"I'm a huge advocate, as my father was, of closer ties between the United States and China, and of more respectful ties including better understanding," he said.
He also said as the largest economies in the world, China and the U.S. have a shared responsibility.
"We have a common humanity," he said, noting that he believes as his father did that the China-U.S. relationship is vital in addressing human challenges which need the two greatest countries on the planet to work together.
Bush said that over the past 41 years of the countries' diplomatic ties, the U.S. has been a huge beneficiary of their bilateral relationship. "We have benefited from the globalization and the business ties (with China)," he said.
He was in the Bay Area Thursday to issue a declaration of action to urge private companies, non-profit organizations, and private individuals in the U.S., China and across the globe to join hands in battling the epidemic.
Bush created the George H. W. Bush Foundation for U.S.-China Relations to carry forward his father's legacy as a source of inspiration for current and future stewards of the China-U.S. relationship.
The foundation is led by China expert David Firestein, a former U.S. diplomat and think tank executive.