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Statement by Ambassador Wang Min at the Sixth Plenary of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia

(Photograph by Bai Jie/Xinhua News Agnecy) 
Mr. President,

At the outset, I thank you for convening today's meeting, and thank the Permanent Mission of Greece to the United Nations for the thoughtful arrangements made for the meeting.

The rampant piracy activity in the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast poses a serious threat to international humanitarian relief, shipping security and trade, and is thus a common challenge facing the interactional community. At Present, pirates still frequently assault and hijack passing vessels off the coast of Somalia, but the rate of successful attacks has somewhat reduced, and the international cooperation in combating piracy has achieved initial results. Having said that,we should not fail to note that piracy is now presenting new features and trends.For instance,the attacks often last a long time,the area of attacks is expanding to the West Indian Ocean,and the activity is usually carried out by pirate groups. This indicates that the root causes of piracy off the Somali coast are not eliminated,and the international efforts against piracy remain a long-term and daunting task.

Mr. President,

The key to effectively address the threat of piracy lies with fostering consensus,coordinating actions, establishing mechanisms and forming synergy. The Contact Group on piracy off the coast of Somalia established pursuant to Security Council resolution 1851 provides an important platform for strengthening international cooperation and coordination on the issue.Thanks to the concerted efforts of all parties, the Contact Group has intensified its work, enhanced communication, and offered constructive assistance to Somalia in the political,security and development fields, and the relevant cooperation has started to bear fruits.

The situation in Somalia bears on peace and stability of the Horn of Africa, even the entire African continent. We are deeply concerned over the current situation in Somalia, and hope that all parties in Somalia will strengthen unity, give top priority to the prospect of the country and interests of the people, take an active part in the peace process,resolve disputes through dialogue and consultation, end the war at an early date, achieve lasting peace, and be committed to national reconstruction.We call on the international community to adopt an integrated strategy, continue to provide political, security, and humanitarian support to Somalia, and help remove the root causes of piracy off the Somali coast.

Mr. President,

China supports the efforts of countries to engage in international cooperation in combating piracy off the Somali coast under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions. Since the establishment of the Contact Group, China has actively participated in the meetings and activities of the Contact Group and its working groups.As of May 2010,China had dispatched 13warships in five successive batches to carry out escort missions in the Gulf of Aden and off the coast of Somalia. Chinese naval fleets have altogether completed escort missions for 1,300 vessels in 202 batches.They have effectively safeguarded the safety and security of vessels and personnel from China and other countries and international organizations going through the Somali coast and the Gulf of Aden, and made contributions to peace and tranquility in the region. Within the framework of the United Nations, China will continue to work with parties concerned to conduct extensive and in-depth discussions on the effective ways to strengthen the fight against piracy, and further build consensus and form synergy to counter the threat of piracy.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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