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Remarks by Counselor Yao Shaojun at the Security Council Meeting on the Syrian Humanitarian Issue

2018/08/30

Madame President,

China thanks Director John Ging for his briefing. We have taken note of the Secretary General's recent report on cross-border humanitarian assistance.

At present, the Syrian humanitarian situation is still facing challenges. Parties in Syria must proceed from the future of the country and the well-being of the people, observe the Security Council's resolutions and resolve differences through dialogue and consultation, so as to immediately ease the humanitarian situation. The United Nations and the international community must increase communication and coordination with the Syrian Government and support all regions within the Syrian territory that are in need of assistance. At the same time, the humanitarian assistance for Syria must be fully consistent with the principles of neutrality, impartiality and non-politicization and be based on the respect for the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria.

We have noticed reports of ongoing return of some Syrian refugees and displaced persons to their homeland. Only when reconstruction makes steady progress can the Syrian people be given hope and can its long-term peace and stability be fully guaranteed. The international community must actively support the reconstruction efforts in Syria, including intensified efforts of clearance of landmines, IEDs and other explosive remnants of war, so as to pave the way for the return of refugees and displaced persons.

Terrorist organizations are still threats to the country's security. It is imperative to consolidate the counter-terrorism achievements in Syria to head off the resurgence of terrorist organizations. The international community must enhance cooperation and uphold uniform standards to firmly combat all terrorist organizations on the Council's list and maintain regional security and stability.

Madame President,

In order to fundamentally ease the Syrian humanitarian situation, we must step up efforts to drive forward the political settlement of the Syrian issue. The international community must jointly support the United Nations as the primary mediator and support the efforts of Special Envoy De Mistura to push forward the Syrian political process based on the "Syrian-led and Syrian-owned" principle and the Security Council resolution 2254. The Council must stay united on the Syrian humanitarian issue to create conditions for the political settlement of the Syrian issue.

Ambassador Xie Xiaoyan, Special Envoy of the Chinese Government on the Syrian Issue, visited Syria and regional countries late July. During the visit, he held further in-depth exchanges of views with the parties and played an active and constructive role for advancing the political settlement of the Syrian issue. China takes the Syrian humanitarian situation very seriously and has been contributing its part to easing the suffering of the Syrian people. Last May, China hosted, for Syria, a workshop on Syria's development and reconstruction. Last July, at the opening session of the Eighth Ministerial Meeting of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, President Xi Jinping announced that China will contribute an additional amount of 600 million RMB to countries such as Syria, Jordan and Lebanon as assistance for humanitarian and reconstruction efforts on the ground. China will continue to do all it can to assist Syria and its neighbours affected by the Syrian refugee issue.

Thank you, Madame President.

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