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Statement by Ambassador Liu Jieyi, Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations at Security Council Open Debate on the Situation in the Middle East

2014/07/22

Mr. President,

I thank Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for his briefing. China appreciates and supports his good offices. I have also listened very carefully to the statements made by the Observer of the State of Palestine and the representative of Israel.

Israel’s military operation in Gaza has lasted for half a month. In spite of repeated appeals by the Security Council and the international community, the Israeli military operation has continued to expand in scope, resulting in a serious deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Gaza. China is deeply concerned and saddened by the situation.

China is resolutely opposed to any use of force against civilians and is particularly opposed to targeting residential areas and hospitals. Such actions, which violate international humanitarian law, are unacceptable.

China urges the parties concerned to stop firing rockets into Israel. The vicious cycle of violence for violence between Israel and Palestine must stop. China urges Israel, Palestine and other parties to respond in good faith to the appeals of the international community and cooperate with international good offices, achieve an immediate unconditional ceasefire and refrain from taking any actions that might escalate tensions, so that calm can be achieved as soon as possible.

China urges the international community to step up its humanitarian assistance and calls for the opening of all crossings in Gaza and the provision of all facilities for humanitarian relief in order to ease the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

The negative effect of the conflict in Gaza has begun to spill over into Syria, with security implications for the borders between Lebanon and Israel and between Syria and Israel. That has seriously threatened regional peace and security. The Security Council and the international community should take action to change that situation. China supports the continued constructive role played by Egypt and other countries in pushing for a ceasefire.

China’s Special Envoy for the Middle East is now visiting several countries in the region and is bringing influence to bear on the parties concerned, with a view to bringing about a ceasefire, a cessation of violence and peace talks. China is actively following up on the new delivery of humanitarian relief to Palestine.

China hopes that the relevant players of the international community will enhance coordination and work in synergy to achieve a ceasefire and the easing of tension. China has always believed that the coexistence of the two countries, Israel and Palestine — to be achieved through peace talks — is the only and correct way to resolve the Palestinian issue. It is also in the fundamental interests of both sides.

We hope that Israel and Palestine will end their conflict soon and make efforts to address the deep-seated problems in their bilateral relations in order to avoid a repetition of tragedies. We urge Israel to stop its settlement activities and release detained Palestinians so as to create conditions for the restarting of the peace talks. We are ready to join with the international community to work unremittingly for a comprehensive, fair and lasting solution of the problems in the Middle East.

China is following closely the situation in Syria. We feel deeply for the suffering of its people. We welcome resolution 2165 (2014), adopted not long ago by the Security Council, on the humanitarian issue in Syria. China has always believed that a political solution is the only way out of the Syrian problem. The international community should stay the course to work out a political settlement on the question of Syria, continue to engage in coordination and cooperation and sustain its positive efforts. China calls on all parties in Syria to implement the Geneva communiqué (S/2012/522, annex) as soon as possible, start an inclusive political transition and find a middle path that takes into account the interests of all sides and which is based on the country’s conditions, so as to achieve a political solution of the Syrian problem.

China welcomes the appointment by the Secretary-General of Mr. Staffan de Mistura as the new Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria and Ambassador Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy as the Deputy Special Envoy. We will continue to enhance cooperation with the relevant players of the international community to work towards a proper solution of the Syrian problem.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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