UN Security Council passes resolution on Syria
Updated: 2015-12-19 06:59
By Amy He(China Daily USA)
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks to members of the Security Council at the United Nations Headquarters in Manhattan, New York, Dec 18, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]
The UN Security Council unanimously passed a resolution on Friday calling for a ceasefire in Syria's five-year-old civil war and political talks to be mediated by the UN to end the conflict.
"The resolution embodies the broad consensus of the international community, and demonstrates the important role of the Security Council, " Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said in remarks after the resolution was passed.
"For five years, the international effort to seek a political settlement has been relentless. This on and off political process has its ups and downs. We need to build on successful experience, learn lessons and press ahead with the political process firmly and steadily so that it can be put an irreversible path," he said.
The resolution was passed 15-0 and calls for elections to be held in Syria within the next 18 months and lays out the political groundwork needed to end the civil war.
Diplomats convened in New York this week for the third meeting of the so-called International Syria Support Group, which previously met twice in Vienna and had endorsed a roadmap for achieving peace in Syria: a cease-fire by January, discussions between Syria and opposition parties mediated by the UN, and then elections in Syria in 18 months.
During the November meeting, the parties agreed to support a nationwide ceasefire in Syria as soon as the representatives of the Syrian government begin taking initial steps towards transition under UN auspices based on the Geneva Communique. The five permanent members of the UN Security Council pledged to support a political transition process in accordance to the communiqué.
"Since the outbreak of the Syrian crisis, China has all alone held an objective and just position and participated in the settlement of the issue," Wang said on Friday. "China does not have or pursue selfish interest on the Syrian issue. No matter how we vote for or against, the goal is always to avoid war and turmoil, give the Syrian people stability, give peace a chance, and make political settlement possible."
US Secretary of State John Kerry, who presided over the vote as president of the Security Council, called the resolution a "milestone because it sets out specific concepts with specific timeframes. Accordingly, we need to work hard together to help these political talks to go forward to prepare for ceasefire and to encourage all the parties in Syria to participate in good faith."