President Shimon Peres on Thursday launched his official page on Weibo, China’s largest social network.
Visiting the company’s Beijing headquarters, Peres, accompanied by the company’s VP, launched his latest social media account by striking a gong. Within moments, Peres’s page had been viewed by 50 million users.
Weibo has hundreds of millions of users who create around 2.8 billion posts per month.
“I’m proud to be a member of the Weibo family,” said Peres at the launch, as company employees waved Chinese and Israeli flags. “I look forward to seeing you all on my page so that I can speak directly to the Chinese people, and especially the younger generation, to strengthen Sino-Israeli relations.”
According to Weibo’s vice president, the event was the largest launch of a page in the company’s history. Peres is one of the first leaders to create a page on the site.
After the ceremony, Peres answered questions posted by Weibo users, then held an interview with two prominent Chinese bloggers.
The questions covered a wide range of topics, including Israeli technology, Sino-Israeli relations, and even Jewish smarts.
“Israel and China have a wide range of cooperation and I have come to China to deepen and expand our trade in technology, medicine, high-tech and science rather than arms; I think that’s preferable,” Peres said in response to question about limits on Israeli arms sales to China.
Turning to the secret of Jewish wisdom, Peres explained, “Our secret is learning. It’s important to ask questions, to cast doubt, to think creatively outside of the box and to learn about issues in depth. Our secret is based on high-quality education.”
Peres also addressed peace talks between Israel and the PA, which have unraveled over the past month. “Both the Israeli and Palestinian people want to live in independent and separate states and we should respect that,” he said. “I hope that the peace process between the people will bear fruit and we will be able to live side by side in friendship.”