China’s veto on Syria sanctions sends consistent message

By Ai Jun Source:Global Times Published: 2017/3/2 1:48:39

China and Russia on Tuesday vetoed a UN resolution to impose sanctions against Syria over alleged chemical weapons attacks in the war-torn country.

China's "no" vote has drawn quite a few reports about Western nations' disappointment. China's Ambassador to the UN, Liu Jieyi, noted that  Beijing resolutely opposes the use of chemical weapons by anyone and under any circumstances. However, given that international investigations are still ongoing, it is too early to act now without hard evidence.

The civil war in Syria, which is now in its sixth year, has caused immeasurable loss and suffering in the country. As the conflict between  government forces and opposition groups deepened, extreme organizations have taken advantage of the security vacuum to  expand. Meanwhile, foreign forces' involvement has turned the nation into a grand chessboard, on which geopolitical games are played by major powers.

Though the international community has appealed to resolve the crisis by political negotiations, still all sides hope to crush one another militarily. The past six years are living proof that more conflicts will only lead to more despair and death. Negotiation is the only way to end the tragedy.

While the talks concern a political transition, a new constitution and elections in Syria, there is no likelihood of a quick breakthrough. 

Yet during the period, all external parties should focus on how to make the negotiation sustainable and safeguard all sides' confidence in resolving their divergences through the gathering, which did not come easily.

The same goes for China's stance on North Korea. Beijing's support for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula will not waver, nor will China endorse North Korean excuses to build its nuclear programs. When Pyongyang went too far in developing nuclear weapons, China did not hesitate to back UN sanctions. Nevertheless, since Beijing believes that blind faith in sanctions will only result in a vicious circle, it has thus insisted that any moves from the outside should not cause more disturbances on the peninsula. Maintaining peace and stability in the region and opposing nuclear programs and chemical attacks is not an either-or thing. But more wisdom is required than simply making too many interventions.

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