Zhang Jun (center front), China's permanent representative to the United Nations, speaks during the Security Council emergency meeting on Ukraine at the UN headquarters in New York, Feb 21, 2022. (WANG YING / XINHUA)
UNITED NATIONS – Violations of Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity must be brought to an end, a Chinese envoy said on Monday.
There is no doubt that the recent US military operations in eastern Syria constitute a violation of Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity and have nothing to do with the right to self-defense under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, said Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the United Nations.
"The unlawful presence of foreign forces and unlawful military operations in Syria must end," he told a UN Security Council briefing on Syria.
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Respect for national sovereignty and territorial integrity is an important principle enshrined in the UN Charter and the cornerstone of international relations, Zhang said.
The unilateral sanctions against Syria and illegal plundering of its resources must stop.
Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the UN
"The provisions of the UN Charter should not be mere quotes for lip service. They are not optional or subject to selective application, and they certainly do not lend themselves to misinterpretation or misapplication.”
The only path to a political solution lies in letting the Syrian people decide the future of their country by themselves in the absence of any external interference, he said, expressing hope that local council elections announced by the Syrian government will be held in September successfully.
On the humanitarian operations in Syria, the envoy reiterated that cross-border relief was a temporary arrangement, urging the transition of cross-border to cross-line operations to shift into a higher gear with a clear timetable in place for the eventual termination of cross-border relief.
He pointed out that economic recovery and development are the ultimate means by which Syria can lift itself out of the humanitarian crisis.
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However, for a long time, unilateral sanctions have disrupted the lifelines of Syria's economic recovery and development, and illegal plundering has stolen away resources crucial to Syria's economic recovery and development, causing incalculable damage to the Syrian people, he said.
"The unilateral sanctions against Syria and illegal plundering of its resources must stop," said Zhang.