I would like to thank Under-Secretary-General Jeffrey Feltman for his briefing.
China has taken note of the presidential election held in Ukraine on 25 May and respects the choice made by the people of Ukraine. At present, he continuing problems and occasional outbreaks of armed conflict and violence in Ukraine have resulted in heavy casualties and loss of life, about which China is deeply concerned.
Regarding the situation in Ukraine in general, I would like to stress the following points.
First, China adheres consistently to the principle of non-interference in other countries' internal affairs and respects the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, including Ukraine. We urge all parties in Ukraine to remain calm and restrained, bring an immediate halt to the violence, avoid harming innocent people and prevent the further escalation of tension and worsening of the situation. China hopes to see stability return with the early restoration of law and order in the country.
Secondly, the crisis in Ukraine involves complex historical factors and ethnic conflicts. A political solution is the only way to defuse it. We hope all the parties will continue with dialogue and negotiations and will push for a settlement of the crisis through political means, by giving full recognition to the legitimate rights, interests and aspirations of every region and ethnic group in the country, accommodating all parties' legitimate concerns and achieving a balance of interests among them. Thirdly, China supports the international community as it continues to use its good offices to ease the situation in Ukraine. It is an urgent priority that all parties refrain from making threats and imposing sanctions and return to the consensus of the four-party Geneva talks to ensure full implementation of that consensus and, on the basis of that agreement, resume the four-party talks and allow political dialogue to play the major role in reaching a negotiated settlement to the crisis, seeking common ground while avoiding conflict and confrontation.
Fourthly, China has always adopted a fair and objective approach on the issue of Ukraine and has advocated a three-principles initiative that we had proposed for a political solution to the Ukraine crisis. We have continued, in our own way, working with all parties. We are in favour of any option that is conducive to easing tensions and promoting a negotiated political settlement, and we are willing to continue our constructive role.