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Statement by Ambassador Wang Min, Deputy Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations at the 70th Session of the General Assembly under the Item "Strengthening of the Coordination of Emergency Humanitarian Assistance of the United Nations"

2015/12/10

Mr. President,

The Chinese delegation thanks the Secretary General for his reports submitted under this item.

The year 2015 has witnessed frequent natural disasters and the intertwinement of traditional and non-traditional security threats such as armed conflicts, terrorism and violent extremism. They have constituted severe challenges in terms of resource and capacity to the global humanitarian response. It is imperative for the international community to strengthen cooperation and respond to these challenges with effective strategies and measures that address both the symptoms and the root causes.

In this connection, China wishes to stress the following points:

First, international humanitarian assistance must comply with the principles of sovereign equality, non-interference in internal affairs and peaceful settlement of disputes enshrined in the UN Charter, as well as the principles of humanitarian assistance established by GA Res. 46/182, namely, humanism, neutrality and impartiality. Humanitarian responses should respect the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of the recipient countries, abide by international law and the law of the host countries, avoid the politicization of humanitarian issues and insist on the de-militarization of humanitarian assistance.

Secondly, the fundamental way to address the global humanitarian crises lies in the pursuit of peace and realization of common development. The international community should seize the opportunity offered by the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to scale up support to the developing countries, improve their development environment and promote their balanced and sustainable development in economic, social and environmental areas. Full consideration should be given to the needs and unique challenges of developing countries in their development efforts and focus be set on helping them address issues of livelihood such as eliminating poverty and hunger and improving health. A comprehensive and integrated approach is needed to address both the symptoms and the origins of humanitarian needs in order to reduce them at the root, and to enhance the capacity for self-development of the recipient countries for them to successfully progress from emergency relief to long-term development. The Chinese President Xi Jinping announced during his attendance at the summits of the 70th session of the UN a series of important initiatives, including the establishment of China-UN Peace and Development Fund and the establishment of the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund, which has fully demonstrated China's willingness to work with others and actively contribute to the achievement of common development and the maintenance of peace and stability.

Thirdly, factors like climate change, food and nutrition insecurity, water shortage and change in demographic structure have increased the risks of natural disasters and the vulnerability of mankind. At the same time, all types of ICTs have greatly enhanced mankind's capacity to prevent and respond to disasters. However, developing countries still face serious constraints in resources and technological capacity. The international community should, on the basis of full respect for the specific conditions and needs of the recipient countries, help them in effectively strengthening their risk management capability, building up all-round capacity in disaster prevention, preparedness, reduction and response, and strengthening resilience.

Fourthly, China appreciates the central role played by the UN in leading and coordinating international humanitarian assistance, and encourages the UN humanitarian system to further improve its institutions, enhance efficiency and transparency, increase the participation of the member states, push to forge synergy among humanitarian assistance efforts at national, regional and international levels, and take effective measures to better protect the safety and security of humanitarian workers. China calls on donors to further intensify efforts and provide more funding on flexible terms in response to humanitarian appeals. We share Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's view that an increase in humanitarian assistance should not be at the expense of resources for development.

The World Humanitarian Summit to be held next May will be an important opportunity for countries to exchange assistance experience and discuss our future direction in this field. We hope that OCHA will enhance the participation and ownership of the member states, fully leverage the positive role of the intergovernmental process, and ensure the transparency and predictability of the Summit and its preparatory process so that the Summit will produce a pragmatic outcome.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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