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Statement by Ambassador WU Haitao after Voting on the Security Council Draft Resolution on Syria

2017/12/19

China is deeply concerned about the current humanitarian situation in Syria and attaches great importance to efforts to mitigate it. With the implementation of the de-escalation areas in Syria, the overall situation has improved, which has in turn created favorable conditions for such operations. The international community should make concerted efforts to ensure that progress in this area continues.

In our view, the international community’s humanitarian operations in Syria must be based on the guiding humanitarian principles of the United Nations and relevant international law. We must ensure that all Syrians including those who live in the de-escalation areas receive timely assistance. The cross-border delivery of humanitarian assistance is a special measure taken in special circumstances, and it must be carried out on a basis of full respect for the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria and in strict compliance with the relevant United Nations resolutions. The associated operations should be subjected to United Nations monitoring, whose transparency should be improved, while efforts must be made to strengthen coordination with the Syrian Government.

Upholding the aforementioned positions, China participated constructively in the negotiations on resolution 2393 (2017), which extends the mandate for cross-border delivery of humanitarian assistance. China has on many occasions underscored its hope that the parties will continue their patient consultations in order that consensus may be achieved. China commends the sponsors, including Egypt and Sweden, for their efforts to promote consensus on the resolution. We note that the sponsors took on board recommendations by some members to enhance monitoring over the delivery of cross-border deliveries. We also note, however, that some of members’ legitimate concerns were not fully included. We believe there is still room for improving the resolution. Council members should have been allowed more time to carry out consultations to reach consensus. In those circumstances, China had to abstain in the voting.

The political process in Syria has entered a critical stage. The international community must be firmly behind the United Nations so that the Organization can play a role as the main channel for mediation in order to help the parties in Syria to find a settlement acceptable to all through peaceful negotiations. That is the only possible way to alleviate the suffering of Syrian people and once and for all find a comprehensive, just and proper solution to the question of Syria.

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