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Statement by Mr. XIE Bohua, Counsellor of the Chinese Delegation, at the 3rd Committee of GA 59th Session on Elimination of Racism and Racial Discrimination (Item 103) and Right of Peoples to Self-Determination (Item104)
(3 November 2004, New York)

2004/11/03


Mr. Chairman:

The Chinese delegation would like to concur with the statement made by the representative of the state of Qatar on behalf of Group 77 & China. We also appreciates the report presented to current session of the General Assembly by the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.

The complete elimination of racism and racial discrimination is an important topic on the agenda of the international community. The Chinese government has consistently held that the elimination of racism and racial discrimination calls for treating both the symptoms and the causes. This is primarily a responsibility of national governments. When taking measures to eradicate the traditional root causes of racism, they should remain alert to modern manifestations of racism and racial discrimination. At the international level, we call on all governments to ratify and implement the International Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Racial Discrimination, the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, and actively support and participate in the work of the Intergovernmental Working Group on the Effective Implementation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action.

About a week ago, the Intergovernmental Working Group of the Commission on Human Rights held its third session, during which in-depth discussions were held on the further implementation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, as well as on themes such as "racism and health" and "racism and the Internet". The Working Group adopted recommendations on the themes discussed. In her address to the session, Ms. Louise Arbour, High Commissioner for Human Rights, reiterated her determination to make the struggle against racism a priority of her Office, cutting across all its areas of activities. China appreciates this commitment and wishes the Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent currently in session great success in its work.

Mr. Chairman,

Restoration of all the rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to self-determination to enable an early settlement of the Palestinian issue in a just and reasonable manner, is the key to durable peace in the Middle East. We deplore the Israeli Government's construction of the separation wall, and its expansion of settlements. We are of the view that countering violence with violence will not resolve any problem but would only further exacerbate tensions. The Chinese government strongly supports the Middle East Peace Process, the principle of "Land for Peace" as well as the peace initiative adopted at the Beirut Summit of Arab States. We call on the international community to join in the efforts for the early restoration of the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people, thus bringing long-lasting stability to the Middle East region.

We have lately learned with sadness the illness of Chairman Arafat. Chairman Arafat is the outstanding leader of the Palestinian National Liberation Movement and an old friend of the Chinese people. The leaders and the people of China are very concerned about his health and sincerely wish him early recovery.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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