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Remarks to the Press by Ambassador Zhang Yishan on Question of Iraq
(November 7, 2002)


Good afternoon,

Through the efforts of the various sides, there is already much improvement in the current text and I should say we are now getting closer.  Of course, some colleagues still have some concerns over some aspects of the draft.  We hope that all parties concerned will continue to demonstrate flexibility and try to reach early agreement on the text.

China supports the Council's efforts to achieve a positive result on the draft resolution. As the current Council president, China is ready to continue to play a constructive role.  My foreign minister as well as I myself have engaged in intensive contacts with the parties concerned. We believe that through concerted efforts, a solution acceptable to all sides will be achieved at an early date.

On the question of weapons inspection, the Security Council should and must speak with one voice. Only in this way will it be possible to send a clear message to Iraq. The Chinese delegation believes that such a message should include at least two aspects: first, Iraq must implement relevant UN resolutions in full and without conditions. Second, there should be a fair, comprehensive and political solution to the question of Iraq. We believe that the urgent issue at present is to start the inspections as soon as possible.  We hope that the Security Council will arrive at an early consensus.  As Council's president and Chinese representative, we are ready to continue to work towards this end.

Thank you.
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