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China criticises US policies at UN General Assembly
September 28, 2014, 6:10 am

 Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during the general debate of the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at the UN headquarters in New York, on Sept. 27, 2014 [Xinhua]

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during the general debate of the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at the UN headquarters in New York, on Sept. 27, 2014 [Xinhua]

Even as the US and its allies on Saturday launched fresh airstrikes against the Islamic State in parts of Syria, China stressed on the need for political solutions to conflicts.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in his address to the UN General Assembly on Saturday said, “We should seek political solutions” in the face of various conflicts and “coercive action should have the authorization of the Security Council.”

“To beat swords into ploughshares may take time and effort, but history and reality have repeatedly demonstrated that to meet violence with violence will not lead to enduring peace, and the use of force will create more problems than solutions,” he warned.

The Chinese Foreign Minister also criticized the US for what he described as “interference” in the internal affairs of other countries.

“If a country places its domestic law above international law and interferes in other countries’ internal affairs at will or even seeks regime change, the legitimacy of its action cannot but be questioned by the international community,” Wang said at the UN.

US President Barack Obama had said on Tuesday that US-led airstrikes against ISIS extremists in Syria were vital for “national security’. Obama confirmed simultaneous airstrikes in Syria on Monday night to, what he called, “disrupt a plot by seasoned al Qaeda operatives in Syria” to attack America.

China also hit back at US criticism of Chinese policies.

“We should treat each other as equals. The pursuit by different countries of economic and social development must be respected. Their right to independently choose their social systems and development paths must be safeguarded,” said the Chinese Foreign Minister on Saturday.

US Treasury reports have often criticized China’s economic policies saying China tries to keep the value of its currency artificially low to give an unfair advantage to its exporters.

Admitting that “our world is far from peaceful”, Wang on Saturday also touched upon the current situation in Ukraine, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, South Sudan and Afghanistan.

“Parties to a conflict should reject the zero- sum approach, address each other’s concerns in negotiations and endeavor to meet each other half way,” he said.

“The Syrian crisis has continued for nearly four years. It is negotiations, not fighting, that offers solution,” he said.

Calling the Palestinian issue “a wound on human conscience”, he called on Israel and Palestine to sustain a durable ceasefire. He also urged Israel to lift its blockade on the Gaza Strip and stop building settlements. At the same time, the legitimate security concerns of Israel should be respected, he said.

“China supports an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process,” he said, asking the international community to fulfill its commitment and responsibility to Afghanistan.

The Chinese Foreign Minister also expressed concern at the growing Ebola crisis that has ravaged West Africa.

“As a good brother and good partner of Africa sharing weal and woe with it, China will continue to stand firmly with the African people, and support and assist them to the best of its ability. We will also take an active part in the relevant international assistance efforts,” he vowed.

 

TBP and Agencies

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