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Work Together to Strengthen Cooperation and Foster Harmony
Statement by H.E. Yang Jiechi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China, at the General Debate of the 62nd Session of the UN General Assembly


Work Together to Strengthen Cooperation and Foster Harmony

Statement by H.E. Yang Jiechi,
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China,
at the General Debate of the 62nd Session of the UN General Assembly

New York, 28 September 2007

Mr. President,

I wish to congratulate Your Excellency on assuming the presidency of the 62nd Session of the UN General Assembly. I am convinced that under your able leadership, the current session will be a fruitful one. I also wish to thank Mme. Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa for her contribution during her presidency of the previous session.

Mr. President,

The current international environment is a highly complex one. Mankind is facing both unprecedented opportunities and challenges. There is a growing trend towards peace, development and cooperation in the world. On the other hand, traditional and non-traditional security threats are intertwined, hotspot issues are acute, the gap between the North and South is widening, trade protectionism is resurfacing, and developing countries generally remain in a disadvantaged position. New development in economic globalization and world multi-polarization is fostering a new thinking on international relations.

In this hall two years ago, Chinese President Hu Jintao called on mankind to build a harmonious world of enduring peace and common prosperity in the 21st century. The core message of his call is, while recognizing the diversity of the world, difference of interests and diversity of cultures, we should harmonize interests, defuse conflicts and promote cooperation for win-win progress in a peaceful and cooperative manner.

Mr. President,

In its 62-year history, the United Nations has played an irreplaceable role in promoting man's cause of peace and development. The current session of the General Assembly should focus on promoting harmonious coexistence among countries. To resolve hotspot issues and peacefully settle international disputes through dialogue and cooperation -- this is not only what the UN Charter explicitly calls for, but also the right way to uphold world peace and stability and achieve mutual benefit and win-win for all.

China remains committed to seeking a peaceful solution to the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula through dialogue to uphold peace and stability on the Peninsula and in northeast Asia. The Six-Party Talks have become an important platform for the parties concerned to maintain dialogue and consultations on realizing denuclearization on the Peninsula, normalizing relations between the countries concerned and building a new harmonious architecture in northeast Asia. We will continue to play a constructive role in advancing the process of the Six-Party Talks and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

Diplomatic negotiations are the best option for solving the Iranian nuclear issue peacefully and meet the common interests of the international community. China opposes nuclear weapon proliferation and stands for upholding the international nuclear non-proliferation regime and peace and stability in the Middle East. No non-proliferation efforts should deviate from the goal of upholding international peace and stability. Countries should honor their due international obligations, and their right to peaceful use of nuclear energy should be fully respected. China urges the parties concerned to show flexibility and resume negotiations at an early date. China will continue to contribute its share to the peaceful settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue.

The Palestine-Israel conflict is at the core of the Middle East issue. China supports the just cause of the Palestinians and other Arab people to restore their lawful national rights and sincerely hopes that Arab countries and Israel will promptly end their disputes through political negotiations on the basis of relevant UN resolutions and the principle of "land for peace". China calls on Palestine to strengthen unity and welcomes the initiative on holding an international conference on the Middle East. We hope that the Iraqi people will continue to work for national reconciliation and restore peace and stability at an early date and that this will lead to a comprehensive, just and enduring resolution of the Middle East issue.

The trilateral dialogue and consultation among the UN, AU and Sudanese government on an equal footing is an effective mechanism for resolving the Darfur issue. The international community should work to sustain the current sound momentum and give full play to the role of the trilateral mechanism as the main channel. We should adhere to the "dual-track" strategy, promote balanced progress in peacekeeping operations and the political process and seek a lasting solution to the Darfur issue through making progress in security, political, humanitarian, economic and social aspects. China is committed to a proper settlement of the Darfur issue. It has provided humanitarian assistance to Darfur on a number of occasions and will send a military engineering unit to join the peacekeeping operations there. China will continue to firmly support the peace and national reconciliation process in Sudan and contribute to the resolution of the Darfur issue and peace, stability and development in Sudan.

Mr. President,

The current session of the General Assembly should promote the peaceful development of all countries. Poverty is a major source of disputes, and only development can eliminate poverty. Human development concerns us all. Obviously, it is impossible to build common prosperity when there is a huge chasm between the North and South.

The international community should act with a sense of urgency and redouble efforts to deliver the Millennium Development Goals and narrow the North-South gap and, in particular, meet Africa's special need for development. Developed countries should increase assistance, open domestic market wider and transfer more technologies to developing countries and provide greater debt relief to them. Developing countries, on their part, should adopt development strategies and policies suited to their national conditions and boost their economic development. We should support an open, equitable and fair multilateral trading regime and oppose trade protectionism. We should work for an early, comprehensive and balanced outcome of the Doha Round negotiations and make it a round of development. Reform of the international economic system should give full expression to changes in the world economy, and give developing countries more say and greater representation in the international economic system.

China gives a high priority to strengthening international cooperation on development as it develops itself, and we seek coordinated and balanced global development. While a developing country itself, China has all along provided assistance to African countries and other developing countries according to its ability and helped them improve their capacity for independent and sustainable development, as we believe lasting peace and common prosperity of the world is possible only with the development of developing countries.

To help Africa realize stability, security and sustainable development is the common responsibility of the international community. China and African countries enjoy political mutual respect and equality and economic mutual benefit and win-win cooperation, and support each other and maintain close consultation in international affairs. We draw on each other's strengths in governance to promote development. Thanks to our joint efforts, China-Africa cooperation has yielded fruitful results. Such cooperation is well received by the African countries and it has brought great benefits to both the Chinese and African peoples. China's cooperation with Africa facilitates Africa's cooperation with other countries and is not targeted against any third party.

Mr. President,

The current session of the UN General Assembly should be committed to promoting harmony between man and nature. Development in the world has both advanced material progress and caused ecological imbalance and environmental pollution. To protect our common homeland is a matter of vital importance for our common future.

Climate change is an environmental issue, but ultimately, it is an issue of development. It has arisen in the course of development and can only be resolved through development. We should uphold the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol and adhere to the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities". Developed countries should face up to their responsibility, fulfill their commitment on emission reduction in real earnest and continue to take the lead in emission reduction after 2012. We should strengthen international cooperation in energy, resources and environment, step up efforts to develop and introduce energy conserving technologies, environmental protection technologies and low carbon energy technologies, and establish reasonable mechanism for financing and technology transfer. This will enable developing countries to gain access to and afford advanced environmental protection technologies, enhance capacity to respond to climate change and effectively address climate change through achieving sustainable development.

China takes climate change seriously. Though its current per capita CO2 emission is less than one third of the average of developed countries, China, acting in a way highly responsible to mankind, has taken many effective measures to tackle climate change, including adopting a series of laws and regulations and setting the goals of reducing energy intensity and increasing forest cover, etc. The Chinese Government has set the following targets: reducing energy intensity and total discharge of major pollutants by about 20% and 10% respectively and increasing the forest cover rate to 20% for the period between the end of 2005 and 2010. Following its National Program on Addressing Climate Change, China will take an active part in international cooperation in climate change and contribute its share to protecting global climate.

Mr. President,

To advance the UN reform and enable the organization to play a more important role in maintaining world peace, promoting common development and strengthening cooperation among countries is crucial to building a harmonious world.

China supports the reform of the United Nations. The reform decisions made at the high-level meeting marking the 60th anniversary of the United Nations held in 2005 should be implemented in a comprehensive and balanced manner; priority should be given to the reform in the area of development, and the United Nations should increase its input in this area. The Human Rights Council should build on its reform outcome in the previous stage and become a platform for dialogue and cooperation rather than an arena of political confrontation. The Security Council reform should prioritize increasing the representation of developing countries and give small and medium sized countries more opportunities to participate in decision making. Reform proposals should be based on the widest possible consensus. China is ready to work with all other parties to turn the reform into a process of strengthening consultation and dialogue and promoting solidarity and cooperation among all UN member states.

Mr. President,

China is committed to building a society of democracy, rule of law, equity and justice, integrity and amity, vitality, stability and order where people live in harmony with nature. To achieve this goal, China is fully implementing the scientific thinking on development. We are working to boost social productivity and ensure people's rights in the political, economic, cultural, social and other fields. By striving to build a harmonious society and improving the material and cultural life of one fifth of the world's population, China is making true contribution to the building of a harmonious world.

China has always pursued its own development as a part of the global effort to promote the common progress of mankind. In international affairs, we are committed to the following goals: promote participation in international affairs by all countries on an equal footing and democracy in international relations, enable all countries to share the benefit of economic globalization and progress in science and technology for win-win outcome, promote exchanges and understanding among civilizations and diversity in the world, enhance dialogue and trust among countries and jointly tackle global issues. China unswervingly pursues a path of peaceful development and we will continue to make further contribution to man's cause of peace and development.

Mr. President,

Taiwan is an inalienable part of China's territory. We will not permit any challenge to the one China principle and General Assembly Resolution 2758. Since 1993, the General Committee of the UN General Assembly has rejected the inclusion of Taiwan-related issues in the agenda of the General Assembly session for 15 years running. This fully demonstrates that any move that runs counter to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter or attempts to distort and deny the General Assembly Resolution 2758 will not receive any support from the UN member states and is doomed to failure. We hope that the countries concerned will not allow themselves to be manipulated by the Taiwan authorities and stop making such erroneous moves.

The Taiwan authorities are now obstinately clinging to the separatist course of "Taiwan independence" and making every attempt to push for a referendum on "applying for membership of the United Nations under the name Taiwan". This is another dangerous step towards "de jure Taiwan independence" taken by the Chen Shui-bian authorities. If unchecked, this move will gravely endanger peace and stability across the Taiwan straits and in the Asia Pacific region. The Chinese Government has always made every effort to promote with all sincerity peaceful development of cross-Straits relations and seek peaceful reunification. However, we will never allow anyone to separate Taiwan from China in any name or in any way. We hope the international community will continue to support China's cause of peaceful reunification, support the Chinese people in opposing and repulsing separatist activities for "Taiwan independence" and work with us to maintain peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits and in the Asia Pacific region.

Mr. President,

The Olympic Games which represents humanity's aspiration for peace, development, cooperation and friendship will for the first time be held in China, a both ancient and youthful country on 8 August 2008. One World, One Dream - this is the theme of the Beijing Olympic Games. The 1.3 billion people in China, together with the rest of the world, are eagerly looking forward to the opening of the Games. The 2008 Olympic Games is a great event for both the Chinese people and the people of the world. We are confident that with the efforts made by the Chinese people and with the strong support from the international community, the 2008 Olympic Games will stand out as a highly successful one.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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