|Statement by Ambassador Wu Haitao at the Security Council on the Middle East|
I thank Special Coordinator Nickolay Mladenov for his briefing and welcome the new written report from Secretary-General António Guterres on the implementation of Security Council resolution 2334.
At present, the international consensus on taking forward the Middle East peace process is faced with challenges, and the effort to facilitate the Palestinian-Israeli peace talks has shown no sign of progress, about which China is deeply worried. In the meantime, the conflict and confrontation in the Gaza Strip is escalating, the construction of settlements in the West Bank has continued, the incendiary rhetoric and violent acts of the relevant parties have been frequent, and the developments on the ground are extremely worrying.
We call on Israel and the relevant parties of Palestine to keep in mind the big picture of regional peace, security and stability, maintain calm, exercise restraint, move in the same direction, halt military actions, and effectively facilitate the ease of tension. The Security Council and other stakeholders that have significant influence on the Middle East must remain united and work hard to create the necessary conditions for the stabilization of the Palestinian-Israeli situation and the resumption of dialogue. China appreciates the efforts of countries such as Egypt and Russia to facilitate internal Palestinian reconciliation.
The question of Palestine is at the core of the Middle East issue that bears on the long-term stability and development of the region. China wishes to stress once again that the "two-state solution" is the fundamental solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The international community needs to build on the relevant UN resolutions, the principle of "land for peace" and the "Arab Peace Initiative”, and scale up efforts to facilitate the resumption of talks to achieve a comprehensive, just and lasting solution to the Palestinian question. Any new initiative should contribute to the realization of the “two-state solution”. Security Council Resolution 2334 should be effectively implemented, immediately cease all settlement activities in the occupied territories, stop the demolition of Palestinian homes, stop the destruction of Palestinian properties, and take measures to prevent violence against civilians.
The final status of Jerusalem is complex and sensitive, underpinning the settlement of the Palestinian question with underlying implications for regional peace and tranquility. The recent conflict in the Al-Aqsa Mosque is worrying. All parties need to exercise caution, act on the principles of respecting diverse history, upholding fairness and justice, implementing international consensus, and achieving peaceful coexistence, and in accordance with the relevant UN resolutions and international consensus, reach a balanced solution through negotiation, taking into account the interests of all sides.
The Golan Heights is internationally recognized as an occupied territory. The UN Security Council has adopted several resolutions calling for the Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights. China opposes any unilateral action to alter the facts and does not wish to see further escalation of regional tension.
Thank you, Mr. President.