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Remarks by Ambassador Geng Shuang at the UN General Assembly on the Use of Veto

2024-03-05 13:00

Mr. President,

Nearly five months after the outbreak of the Gaza conflict, the Security Council's call for a ceasefire has been forcibly blocked by the United States for the fourth time, which China found extremely disappointing. The result of the Security Council’s vote clearly shows that on the issue of demanding a ceasefire in Gaza, the vast majority of Council members are in agreement. However, the United States has been the only country to abuse its veto power to stifle the consensus of the Council, causing widespread discontent in the international community.

An immediate ceasefire in Gaza is a prerequisite to save innocent civilians and provide humanitarian assistance, and a key to avoiding further escalation and proliferation of the conflict. As Ramadan is approaching, the international community must push for an immediate ceasefire and end to the conflict with the strongest sense of urgency and the political determination, in order to preserve the hope of survival for the people of Gaza. We urge Israel to immediately change course, cancel its offensive plans against Rafah, cease military attacks on Gaza, and stop the forced transfer and collective punishment of the Palestinian population. We call on the country concerned to put aside geostrategic considerations and domestic political calculations, be truly impartial and responsible in making the right choice, and play a constructive role in promoting a ceasefire in Gaza.

Gaza under gunfire is facing an unprecedented humanitarian disaster, with an extreme shortage of survival supplies, nearly 600,000 people on the verge of famine, and social order on the verge of collapse. We urge Israel, as the occupying power, to comply with its obligations under international law to guarantee safe, rapid, unimpeded entry of sufficient humanitarian supplies. Practical measures should be taken to protect the safety of humanitarian agencies and personnel and to facilitate them to deliver their relief work. Resolutions 2712 and 2720 adopted by Security Council must be fully implemented.

The two-State solution is the only viable way to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli issue. Recently, some Israeli political figures have openly and repeatedly rejected the two-State solution and any international efforts towards independent Palestinian statehood. This is very alarming. We urge Israel to cease discrediting the two-State solution, stop eroding the basis of the two-State solution, and end its illegal settlement activities. China calls for intensified international and regional diplomatic efforts to reshape a credible multilateral process, revitalize the political prospects for the two-State solution, and relaunch direct Palestinian-Israeli negotiations. We call for an international peace conference that is more broad-based and effective. We support Palestine in becoming a full member state of the UN at an earlier date.

China will continue to work tirelessly with the international community to bring an early end to the fighting in Gaza, alleviate the humanitarian disaster, implement the two-State solution, and achieve enduring peace and stability in the Middle East.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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