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Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Jun at the UN Security Council Briefing on Somalia

2024-02-19 12:40

Madam President,

I thank Special Representative Catriona Laing and Special Representative Mohamed El-Amine Souef for their briefings, and welcome the Permanent Representative of Somalia to this meeting.

This is a critical year for the political process, security transition, and national reconstruction in Somalia. The attention and support of the United Nations and the international community for Somalia must not waver.

First, we must support Somalia in maintaining political stability. Recently, the Federal Government of Somalia has been actively engaged in political dialogue with its member states on key issues such as the political structures of the country, constitution-making, and general elections. China supports all parties in Somalia in resolving their differences through dialogue and consultation and advancing the political transition process. It should be noted that the choice of political system and development path is an internal affair of Somalia. The international community should adhere to the Somali-led and Somali-owned principle and avoid the imposition of an externally-imposed governance model. In fulfilling their mandates in areas such as political mediation, SRSG Laing and UNSOM should fully respect Somalia’s sovereignty and ownership and constructively support Somalia's political transition. The cooperation between the UN and Somalia should be continuously optimized and improved in light of the development of the situation. China supports the timely facilitation of the transition of UNSOM in accordance with the request of the Somali government. 

Second, we must support security transition in Somalia. Recently, the terrorist organization Al-Shabaab attacked a number of targets in the capital Mogadishu, causing casualties among civilians and UN personnel. This reminds us once again that terrorism remains the main threat to Somalia. The international community should support the Federal Government of Somalia in consolidating the results of the previous phase of counter-terrorism and stabilization. The Somali security sector needs to be supported in building its capacity to assume greater responsibility for security. 

ATMIS is scheduled to withdraw from Somalia by the end of this year. China support the advancements of the ATMIS drawdown plan in a smooth, orderly, and responsible manner on the basis of a comprehensive assessment of the security situation in Somalia, so as to avoid a security vacuum. At present, all parties are generally concerned about the security arrangements after the withdrawal of ATMIS. China is of the view that any future arrangements should meet the security needs of Somalia and respect the wishes of the Federal Government of Somalia. Traditional developed country donors should not reduced their support for Somalia, nor should they shift their responsibilities or simply walk away. 

Third, we must support Somalia’s economic and social reconstruction. China welcomes the recent launch of the Centennial Vision 2060 by the Federal Government of Somalia, which sets out the priorities for national development. Somalia has reached the completion point of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries, and international community and financial institutions should seize this opportunity to increase their assistance to Somalia and avoid attaching political conditions to assistance and funding. UNSOM should mobilize international resources for the priority areas of development in Somalia and support the promotion of peace through development to address the root causes of the conflict in Somalia. 

China has consistently upheld the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and has supported countries in maintaining their sovereignty and territorial integrity. China supports the efforts of the Federal Government of Somalia in safeguarding national unity, sovereignty, and territorial integrity. China hopes that the countries of the region will handle their affairs through dialogue and achieve common development on the basis of friendly cooperation. 

I thank you, Madam President.

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