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China's UN envoy calls for backing of two-state solution

By LIU YINMENG in Los Angeles | China Daily Global | Updated: 2021-05-28 10:40
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Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the UN. [Photo/Xinhua]

China's top envoy to the United Nations on Thursday stressed that the UN Security Council should take robust actions to address the Palestinian-Israeli issue and reaffirm its unwavering support for the two-state solution.

"The latest round of conflict tells us once again that the Middle East peace process must not be derailed; the question of Palestine must not be marginalized; the sufferings of the Palestinian people and their legitimate rights must not be ignored; the multiple binding resolutions adopted by the Security Council must not be forgotten; and the council's responsibilities must not be shirked," said Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the UN.

The ambassador said the Security Council should take strong action, reaffirm its firm support for the two-state solution, call on the international community to practice real multilateralism, and play its due role in the settlement of the Palestinian question.

Speaking at the top UN body's meeting on "The Situation in the Middle East, Including the Palestinian Question," Zhang noted that over the past month, Palestinian-Israeli tensions have been tugging at the heartstrings of the world.

The Security Council held a number of emergency meetings on the matter and issued a press statement last Sunday, he said.

Zhang said he hopes the message from the council, which speaks in one voice, will contribute to the de-escalation of the situation and the relaunching of the peace process.

A woman holding her daughter looks at the destructed buildings of her house at the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanun, May 21, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

The ambassador called on the international community to step up its efforts to ensure that parties concerned abide by the cease-fire agreement and restore calm in full, as soon as possible.

China, serving as Security Council president for May, urges all parties concerned to exercise restraint and refrain from any moves that may escalate the situation, Zhang said.

Israel should genuinely put an end to the violence, threats and provocations against the Muslim population, maintain and respect the historical status quo of the holy sites in Jerusalem, stop evicting the Palestinian people, and halt all settlement activities, the envoy said.

The humanitarian crisis in the occupied Palestinian territory is concerning, the ambassador noted.

"We call on the international community to act without delay and provide humanitarian assistance to Palestine through multiple channels and emergency funding support to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)," Zhang said.

China urges Israel to facilitate access to humanitarian assistance and completely lift the blockade on Gaza as soon as possible, the envoy said.

China will provide $1 million in cash to Palestine as emergency humanitarian aid. Another $1 million and 200,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine also will be donated to UNRWA, Zhang said.

Every time the Palestinian-Israeli situation falls into turmoil, it's a warning to the international rule of law, he said. It weighs on the human conscience and tests the effectiveness of multilateral mechanisms.

As China State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi pointed out during the Security Council's emergency public meeting on May 16, an enduring solution to the Palestine-Israel issue can be achieved only on the basis of the two-state solution, Zhang said.

It's important to push Palestine and Israel to resume equal-footage dialogue at an early date, so as to find a way to live in peace as neighbors, he added.

"The international community, especially countries with influence on Palestine and Israel, must take an objective and impartial position and work hard to facilitate the Middle East peace process," the ambassador said.

Zhang reiterated that China supports the resumption of peace talks between Palestine and Israel on the basis of the two-state solution as soon as possible.

China supports the early establishment of a fully sovereign, independent state of Palestine, on the basis of the 1967 borders, and with East Jerusalem as its capital, he added. he added.

"We call on all parties in the international community to uphold peace, justice, fairness and good conscience, practice true multilateralism, and make due contributions to the just and lasting settlement of the Palestinian question," Zhang said.

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