China / Politics

Syrian opposition delegation to visit China

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-04-14 19:42

BEIJING -- The head of the National Coalition of Syrian Opposition and Revolutionary Forces, Ahmad Jarba, will visit China from April 15 to 18, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Monday.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming will meet with him and his delegation. Both sides will discuss the Syria situation and promote a political solution, Hua said at a daily news briefing.

Chinese analysts and scholars will also meet the delegation, Hua said.

"Hosting the delegation's visit is part of China's effort to engage in positive and balanced mediation and facilitate a political solution," Hua said.

The Syrian crisis, entering the fourth year, has brought suffering to the Syrian people and dealt a huge blow to regional peace and stability. "China is deeply worried about this," Hua said.

The Syrian government and opposition have held two rounds of negotiations at the Geneva II conference and taken an important step for a political solution of the Syria issue, Hua said.

She called for the early start of the third round of talks and finding a middle way that accommodates each other's concerns and acceptable to all.

On a report that the Syrian government accused rebels of using toxic gas in Hama province while the opposition activists denied the accusation, Hua said China had taken note of the report.

Hua said China "firmly opposes the use of chemical weapons, no matter who did it."

She said it benefited regional peace and stability to ensure the safe and smooth removal and destruction of chemical weapons in Syria.

At present, the removal and destruction of chemical weapons was carried out under the framework of related decisions and resolutions of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the UN Security Council and has entered into a crucial stage, said Hua.

"We call on all parties to cherish the progress made so far on the removal and destruction of chemical weapons, keep restraint and expand consensus, complete the removal and destruction as soon as possible via practical cooperation to create favorable conditions for a political solution to the Syrian issue," she said.

Syria's state television said on Saturday that the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front used toxic gas in Hama, killing at least two people and causing suffocation to up to one hundred people.

Meanwhile, opposition activists turned the accusation against the Syrian government, saying that at least six people had been killed and 100 others affected by the government forces' use of poisonous gas in Kafr Zaita and the Harasta suburb, in the eastern countryside of the capital Damascus.

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