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Statement by Ms.Guo Xiaomei,Head of Chinese Delegation to the Thirteenth Plenary Meeting of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia


Mr. Chairman,

I thank you for convening today’s meeting, and appreciate the leadership role of India in chairing the Contact Group.I also welcome chairman of each working group for their briefings,and thank them for their important contributions.

Mr. Chairman;

Piracy off the coast of Somalia affects regional peace and stability and posts a threat to international shipping and trade.It is a shared concern of the international community. In recent years,all parties concerned have engaged in active international cooperation through the platform of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia and achieved notable results.This year has seen substantial decrease in piracy off the coast of Somalia.However, pirates now have strengthened their operational capabilities with expanding scope of attacks and increased propensity to violence, which warrants concerns.The international community needs to further strengthen coordination and cooperation and continue to make unremitting efforts to deal with piracy in that area.

Mr. Chairman,

China supports the fight against piracy off the coast of Somalia under relevant international law and Security Council resolutions.China has taken an active part in all the activities of the Contact Group and played a constructive role.The Chinese Navy started to send escort missions to the Gulf of Aden and the Somali waters in December 2008.Since then, China has dispatched13 formation convoys of altogether 34 vessels and fulfilled over520 escort missions for nearly 5,000 vessels,about half of which are foreign vessels.China will further step up coordination and information sharing in military activities with the parties concerned on the basis of voluntary participation and consultation on an equal footing so as to jointly uphold safety and order of the sea lanes in the Somali waters.

To fight piracy, both the symptoms and the root causes should be addressed.Piracy comes about as a result of problems on the land.To fundamentally stem out piracy, political stability, economic development and social tranquility need to be realized in Somalia. The peace process in Somalia has made major headways,with the tasks described in the Roadmap Ending the Transition fulfilled by and large, a new president elected, a new prime minister appointed and a new government formed.China welcomes and offers congratulations on these progresses.However, the new government in Somalia still faces a myriad of challenges,including strengthening governance,improving national reconciliation, recovering its economy and providing services to its people.National rebuilding is still a long and uphill journey. China supports the new Somali government’s effort to actively implement the provisional constitution, exercise effective governance over the whole of its territory as soon as possible,strengthen national security situation and press ahead with economic and social reconstruction.China urges relevant factions in Somalia to give up violence and join in the peace process at an early date.

The international community should continue with the comprehensive strategies to support stability and development in Somalia. China supports the Secretary-General in making a strategic plan for UN’s presence in Somalia for the period of 2012to 2016 and calls upon the international community to make good their assistance pledges to Somalia, help build up the capacity of regional mechanisms in dealing with piracy off the coast of Somalia and continue to increase financial,technical and logistical assistance to AMISOM.

Mr. Chairman,

China stands ready to work with the rest of the international community to continue to play an active and constructive role in moving the Somali peace process forward, promoting economic and social development in Somalia and removing the root causes of piracy off the coast of Somalia.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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