|Statement by H.E. Ambassador Wang Min On Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism At the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly|
At the outset, I wish to congratulate you on your election as the chairman of the 6th Committee of the current session of the GA. I wish also to congratulate the others members of the Bureau for their election.
Chinese delegation associates itself with the statement made by Tajikistan on behalf on the member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
Terrorism is one of the gravest threats to international peace and security. In recent years, under the leadership and coordination of relevant UN agencies, the international community, guided by existing counter-terrorism conventions, has been working to deepen cooperation in the fight against terrorism and has achieved good results. However, as the recent spate of terrorist attacks has underscored, the terrorist threat is far from being eliminated and the fight against terrorism continues to be an arduous and complex task.
The Chinese government has always opposed terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and supported international efforts to eliminate terrorism. With regard to international counter-terrorism cooperation, the Chinese delegation wishes to stress the following points:
First, counter-terrorism endeavors should be led by the United Nations. Terrorism is an international scourge and a common enemy of mankind. Only a joint response by both states and the international community can effectively deal with it. The Chinese government supports efforts made by relevant UN bodies to strengthen coordination and cooperation in this field while acting in accordance with their own mandates. We call for comprehensive and balanced implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and a balanced approach to advance the four pillars of the Strategy. We hope that the UN Counter-Terrorism Center will play an effective role in counter-terrorism capacity building and assistance.
Second, counter-terrorism activities must strictly comply with the recognized international law, including the UN Charter. We call upon states to join the 13 UN counter-terrorism conventions and fully abide by their treaty obligations. The Chinese government attaches great importance to and supports the drafting of a comprehensive convention on international terrorism. We hope that parties will work in a cooperative and constructive spirit in order to conclude the negotiations as soon as possible so as to build a complete international legal regime on counter-terrorism.
Third, efforts to combat terrorism should adhere to a uniform set of criteria and avoid double-standard and selectivity. Terrorists, whoever they are and whatever their motivations and purposes, should be fought with equal measure of resolve. To base counter-terrorism efforts on ideology and national preferences is to deviate from the fundamental principles underpinning the fight against terrorism. The Chinese government reaffirms its opposition to any attempt to link terrorism with specific countries, governments, ethnicity or religion. We are equally opposed to any effort to harbor and abet terrorists on political, ethnic and religious grounds.
Fourth, it is necessary to address both the symptoms and the root causes of terrorism. Prevention and punishment should go hand in hand. A holistic approach involving political, economic, social and diplomatic dimensions is called for and efforts are needed to eliminate poverty, better people’s livelihood, tackle development issues and promote education and cultural development. It is important to take a long-term view while addressing the immediate concerns in order to eradicate the breeding grounds of terrorism.
China is a victim of terrorism. The Chinese government attaches great importance to the prevention of terrorism. Through integrated measures focused on promoting economic development and enhancing education, my government has endeavored to create a harmonious environment and realize social justice, stability and unity, which is crucial to eliminating the breeding grounds of terrorism. At the same time, my government has sought to strengthen counter-terrorism legislation and institutional building through the adoption of specific counter-terrorism legislations. In October 2011, the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress approved the Decision on Issues Related to Strengthening Counter-Terrorism Activities. This was our first legislation solely for the purpose of counter-terrorism. It provides clear definitions of terrorist activities, terrorist organizations and terrorists. It also defines the procedures for identifying and making public the names of terrorist organizations and individuals and for freezing terrorism-related assets. This legislation was a step forward in improving China’s legal mechanism to better implement Security Council counter-terrorism resolutions while providing a clear domestic legal framework for our international counter-terrorism cooperation.
China’s fight against terrorism is an integral part of international efforts to root out terrorism. The “East Turkistan” terrorist force represented by the “Eastern Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM)” constitutes the most direct and real terrorist threat to China. In an attempt to split China, it has long carried out terrorist attacks that have resulted in large number of civilian casualties and heavy property loss, posing a grave threat to China’s national security and regional peace and stability. “ETIM” was placed by the Security Council on the list of terrorist organizations in September 2002. In December 2003, it was identified by China’s Ministry of Public Security as one of the four “East Turkistan” terrorist organizations and in September 2007, it was placed on the list of terrorist organizations that are banned from operating in the territories of member states of Shanghai Cooperation Organization. In combating “East Turkistan” terrorist force, including “ETIM”, the Chinese government responded to the terrorist attacks as required by the law, and firmly thwarted the attempt of sabotage by “East Turkistan” terrorists.
The Chinese government has always attached great importance to international counter-terrorism cooperation and taken an active part in such cooperation. We have carried out effective and extensive bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the fight against terrorism. China has set up regular or ad hoc mechanisms of consultation and exchanges with over twenty countries. We actively participate in the activities of the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum, support international cooperation against financing of terrorism and have provided, to the best of our ability, material assistance and training in the area of counter-terrorism to relevant developing countries.
China highly values the role of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in furthering regional counter-terrorism cooperation. In June this year, the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress approved the Procedural Agreement on Organizing and Holding Joint Counter-Terrorism Exercise by SCO Member States and the Procedural Agreement on Organizing and Holding Joint Counter-Terrorism Operation on the Territory of SCO Member States, thus setting a legal basis for China to organize and hold joint counter-terrorism exercises and operations with other member states of SCO.
China will continue to work with the international community in our joint endeavor to fight against all forms of terrorism and maintain international peace and security.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.