|Statement by Ambassador Wu Haitao at Security Council Briefing on Syria|
I would like to thank Special Envoy Pedersen for this briefing and commend him for his active efforts since his assumption of his position to promote a political settlement in Syria.
Years of conflict in Syria has brought profound suffering to the country and its people. The Syrian people long for peace and want to return home and rebuild their normal lives as soon as possible.
The large-scale conflict in Syria has essentially come to an end. China welcomes the meeting in Sochi on 14 February of leaders from Russia, Turkey and Iran to discuss the Syrian issue, which produced a joint statement reaffirming continued efforts to crack down on terrorist groups and individuals listed by the Security Council, as well as a renewed commitment to the Syrian political process. As the next step, the international community should focus on promoting work in the following areas.
First, we must continue to advance the process of political settlement in Syria. The United Nations should strengthen coordination with the Syrian Government, promote the prompt formation of a representative Syrian constitutional committee that is acceptable to all and accommodates the legitimate concerns of the Syrian Government and all other parties with a view to launching an effective and sustained Syrian political process. The United Nations should continue to intensify its efforts and act as the main channel of mediation. The members of the Council should be united and speak with one voice in order to create the conditions for a political solution to the Syrian issue.
Secondly, we must persist in combating terrorist forces. There is a tendency for terrorist groups in Idlib to re-emerge, which threatens Syria’s security and stability and hinders reconstruction and the return of refugees. The international community should strengthen counter-terrorism cooperation, harmonize standards, crack down on all terrorist groups listed by the Council and prevent the resurgence of terrorist organizations that will undermine the hard-won stability of the security situation.
Thirdly, we must encourage Syrian parties to meet each other half way. In accordance with the spirit of resolution 2254 (2015), on the basis of respect for Syria’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity, and in line with the principle of a Syrian-owned and Syrian-led process, the parties concerned in the Syrian issue should promote the adoption of an inclusive political process by all Syrian parties and seek a solution acceptable to all.
China has been consistently committed to a political solution in Syria. We stand ready to enhance communication and cooperation with the United Nations and all other relevant parties and to play an active and constructive role in advancing the political settlement in Syria.
Thank you, Mr. President.