|Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Jun at the UN Security Council Briefing on Ukraine
The military conflict in Ukraine is already over four months long. On this geopolitical crisis that the international community closely follows, China has always made its independent assessments based on the historical context and the merits of the issue itself. As pointed out by the Chinese leader, it is necessary to respect sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, to adhere to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, to take seriously the legitimate security concerns of all countries, and to support all efforts that are conducive to the peaceful settlement of the crisis. For some time now, China has joined all peace-loving countries calling for ceasefire. We have been committed to promoting peace talks, and making relentless efforts to de-escalate situation, restore peace, mitigate humanitarian situation, and stabilize the global economy.
It is regrettable and worrying that the conflict continues. The crisis is trending in a protracted and extended direction. Humanitarian situation remains dire. Civilian casualties are growing. And people are suffering. Multi-faceted spillover effects are exacerbating global challenges. We stress again that dialogue and negotiation is the only viable way to restore and consolidate peace. Ending hostilities at an early date is the keen aspiration of the international community. China supports direct negotiations between Russia and Ukraine. We also welcome Secretary-General’s good offices on the issue of grain export among others.
Peace is for all to strive for and defend. All members of the international community should responsibly work for a proper resolution of the crisis, avoid contrary actions. All parties should work in concert to create the necessary environment and conditions for peace walks between the parties. Facts have fully borne out that sending weapons cannot bring about peace, nor can sanctions and pressurization solve the security conundrum. Attempts to weaponize the world economy and to coerce other countries into taking sides will artificially divide the international community, and make the world even less secure. Delaying and obstructing diplomatic negotiations for geopolitical purposes will only add fuel to the fire to intensify confrontation and magnify conflicts. Inevitably, it will end up hurting themselves.
The Ukraine crisis has once again sounded alarm for the world. Security is indivisible. A blind faith in the position of strength, the expansion of military alliance, and the pursuit of one’s own security at the expense of the insecurity of other countries will inevitably lead to security dilemmas. NATO’s five eastward expansions after the Cold War have not only failed to make Europe securer, but also sowed the seed of conflict. It is a lesson worth reflecting. The Cold War ended a long time ago, It is necessary for NATO to reconsider its own positioning and its responsibilities, completely abandon the Cold-War mentality that is based on bloc confrontation, and strive to build a balanced, effective, and sustainable European security framework in line with the principle of indivisible security.
Like all peace-loving countries and people around the world, China pays close attention to NATO strategic adjustment, and is deeply concerned about the policy implications of the so-called “Strategic Concept”. Certain NOTO leaders lately painted other countries as a threat. But the fact is it’s NATO itself that has made troubles in different parts of the world. We urge NATO to learn its lessons, and not to use Ukraine crisis as excuse to stoke worldwide bloc confrontation or a new Cold War, and not to look for imaginary enemies in the Asia Pacific or artificially create contradictions and divisions. We firmly oppose certain elements clamoring for NATO’s involvement in the Asia Pacific, or an Asia Pacific version of NATO on the back of military alliances. The long-outdated Cold War script must never be reenacted in the Asia Pacific. The kind of turmoil and conflict that are affecting parts of the world must not be allowed to happen in the Asia Pacific. Asia Pacific countries share the appreciation for the hard-won peace and prosperity, and the wish to focus on mutually beneficial cooperation in pursuit of common development and revitalization. Any attempt to go against the tide of history is doomed to fail.
Thank you, Mr. President.