|Statement by Ambassador MA Zhaoxu at the Security Council Briefing on Myanmar|
China listened attentively to the briefings delivered by the Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr. Miroslav Jenča, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Mr. Filippo Grandi, and noted their positive assessment of the progress achieved in Rakhine state and the efforts made by Myanmar and Bangladesh. Those undertakings should be sufficiently affirmed.
China is a friendly neighbour of Myanmar and Bangladesh. We attach great importance to the situation in Rakhine state and have provided emergency humanitarian relief for the displaced persons. At the same time, we have actively worked with both parties to push for dialogue and consultations with a view to finding a solution.
Since last November, the Foreign Minister of China, Mr. Wang Yi, visited Bangladesh and Myanmar and proposed a three-phase approach for the solution of the Rakhine state issue. It has been unanimously endorsed by Myanmar and Bangladesh. It pleases us to see that some of the approaches are being implemented. The goal of the first phase, which is to cease hostilities on the ground and restore stability and order, has basically been achieved. The goal of the second phase is to seek viable measures to find a solution to the problem through communication and consultations by both parties and is also being pushed forward. The third phase is to adopt measures to resolve the root causes of poverty through development. I am confident that this goal can soon be achieved through the efforts of Myanmar to alleviate poverty in Rakhine state, along with the vigorous support of the international community.
The problem in Myanmar’s Rakhine state has a complex historical, ethnic and religious background. It cannot be solved overnight. At present, the situation on the ground has been visibly eased. Humanitarian relief operations have been actively carried out. Myanmar and Bangladesh have maintained dialogue and consultations, held joint working group meetings on repatriation and worked with United Nations agencies. The Advisory Board to the Committee for Implementation of the Recommendations on Rakhine State visited Myanmar recently and affirmed Myanmar’s efforts to implement recommendations contained in its report. Recently, Myanmar invited foreign missions and media to Myanmar to visit the affected areas in Rakhine state. China appreciates Myanmar and Bangladesh for those efforts. China has noted that the process of repatriation of the displaced by Myanmar and Bangladesh has recently been delayed. We hope that the international community can objectively observe the difficulties and challenges encountered by the Governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh, remain patient and provide support and assistance. We also hope it will encourage both parties, Myanmar and Bangladesh, to appropriately solve the problems that emerged in the process of implementing their agreement through dialogue and consultations so as to repatriate the displaced at an early date.
The Security Council adopted a presidential statement in November 2017 (S/PRST/2017/22) on Rakhine state. At the moment, the situation in Rakhine state is generally stable. China has consistently maintained that the appropriate way to resolve the issue of Rakhine state is through bilateral efforts by Myanmar and Bangladesh. Only when they reach a settlement that is acceptable to the countries concerned will the agreement be capable of being implemented and sustained and of obtaining the understanding and support of every sector in those countries. China hopes that Myanmar and Bangladesh will continue to take appropriate steps and that the Security Council and the international community will play a constructive role in the process.
Lastly, I would like to reaffirm China’s willingness to work with all the parties to actively advance efforts aimed at helping to restore order and achieve stability and sustained development in Rakhine state.