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Explanation of Vote by Ambassador Zhang Yesui on Security Council Resolution on Sanctions against Eritrea


Mr. President,

The Security Council just adopted resolution 1907.China abstained on the vote of the draft resolution. I would like to make the following three points:

(Photograph by Shen Hong/Xinhua News Agency)

First, China always firmly supports the peace process in Somalia. China has maintained friendly relations and cooperation with consecutive Transitional Federal Governments in Somalia. We support the efforts of the international community to promote the political reconciliation process in the country, and have taken an active part in supporting the diplomatic efforts of the Security Council to coordinate with the domestic negotiations in Somalia launched in Djibouti. The ultimate settlement of the Somali issue relies on not only substantive breakthrough in the political reconciliation process in Somalia, but also sincere cooperation of countries in the region. We call on all parties concerned to truly respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia, support the Somali Transitional Federal Government, and make greater contribution to peace and security in the country.

Second, China always supports the African Union in playing an important and constructive role in addressing hotspot issues in Africa. In recent years, the African Union has been vigorously engaged in diplomatic mediation and good offices efforts as well as peacekeeping operations in hotspot issues in Africa. It strives to resolve issues in Africa in an "African way" and has gained some successful experience. These efforts of the African Union deserve our respect, and further demonstrate its value in maintaining regional peace and security as a strategic partner of the United Nations. We look forward to a bigger role by the AU in addressing conflicts in the Horn of Africa through political and diplomatic efforts.

Third, China always maintains that the Security Council should act prudently in imposing sanctions. The adoption of the resolution on sanctions against Eritrea by the Security Council shall not replace diplomatic efforts to resolve disputes through dialogue and negotiations. The top priority now is for all parties concerned to keep calm, exercise restraint, and refrain from action that may aggravate the situation. One can choose his friends, but no country can choose its neighbors. The harmonious coexistence among IGAD members is a blessing for countries in the Horn of Africa. We hope countries in the region, including Eritrea, will bear in mind the long-term interests of their people and the region, and make concerted and more constructive efforts to create a harmonious regional environment favorable for win-win cooperation.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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