Chinese envoy calls for dialogue, cooperation to resolve Syrian chemical weapons issue

Xinhua , Friday 3 Sep 2021

The international community should create favorable conditions for dialogue and cooperation between the two sides, respect the legitimate concerns of Syria and avoid exerting political pressure, he told the Security Council

UN headquarters
Photo taken on Aug. 24, 2021 shows a view of the Security Council meeting on the situation in Syria at the UN headquarters in New York. UN

 A Chinese envoy late on Thursday called for dialogue and cooperation, as well as a return to the framework of the Chemical Weapons Convention, to resolve the issue of Syrian chemical weapons.

It is imperative to maintain dialogue and cooperation to resolve the Syrian chemical weapons issue. China encourages the Technical Secretariat of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to strengthen dialogue with Syria to jointly resolve outstanding issues, said Geng Shuang, China's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations.

The international community should create favorable conditions for dialogue and cooperation between the two sides, respect the legitimate concerns of Syria and avoid exerting political pressure, he told the Security Council.

"We must go back to the framework of the Chemical Weapons Convention to resolve the issue of the Syrian chemical weapons. All States Parties should safeguard the authority and integrity of the convention. The investigation and handling of incidents of alleged use of chemical weapons must be in strict compliance with the provisions of the convention and the Verification Annex and follow the principles of objectivity, impartiality and professionalism," said Geng.

Based on this position, China maintains that the establishment of the Investigation and Identification Team is beyond the authorization of the convention, he said.

"We have always had concerns about its working methods, procedures and staff composition. China urges all States Parties to observe the principle of multilateralism, strengthen dialogue and consultation, reduce political confrontation, and work together to create favorable conditions and a good atmosphere for the OPCW to resume its normal functioning."

In previous Security Council meetings on the issue of Syrian chemical weapons, China has comprehensively and clearly stated its position, stressing that the investigations of issues related to Syrian chemical weapons should be based on facts and guided by science, and should be conducted in an objective and fair manner, he said. 

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