Chinese UN envoy: 'Reflection' needed on Afghanistan upheaval

2021-08-31 11:21:46China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

Geng Shuang, China's deputy permanent representative to the UN. (Photo/Foreign Ministry official website)

The withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan should lead to their "reflection and correction", a Chinese envoy to the United Nations said on Monday.

"We hope that relevant countries will realize the fact that withdrawal is not the end of responsibility, but the beginning of reflection and correction," said Geng Shuang, China's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, at an emergency session of the UN Security Council on the situation in Afghanistan on Monday.

Relevant countries should learn from the lessons, truly respect the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Afghanistan, as well as the rights of the Afghan people to determine their own future, Geng said.

He expressed hope that relevant countries will change the "wrong practice of imposing their own wills on the others", "the hegemonic practices of imposing sanctions", and using force at every turn.

Those countries should be responsible for what they've done in the past 20 years and fulfill their commitment toward the peaceful rebuilding of Afghanistan, Geng said.

"They cannot claim to care about the Afghan people's welfare, while imposing unilateral sanctions, or claim to support Afghanistan's acceleration of economic and social development, while seizing and freezing Afghan's overseas assets," he added.

Those countries have left behind a "huge catastrophe" in Afghanistan. They shifted the blame and responsibility to Afghanistan's neighboring countries and the Security Council, Geng said.

The envoy stressed that the actions taken by foreign troops in the past 20 years, including "the criminal activities carried out by the U.S. and Australia forces for the indiscriminate killing of civilians", must not be wiped out and must continue to be investigated.

The U.S.' recent retaliatory attack on the Islamic State has caused casualties of innocent civilians, Geng said. China calls on the U.S. to refrain from indiscriminately bombing the civilian-populated areas in Afghanistan.

China has always attached great importance to Afghanistan's fight against terrorism, the envoy said, adding that China strongly condemns the recent terrorist attacks in Kabul.

"This terrorist attack in Kabul once again proves that the war in Afghanistan did not achieve the goal of eliminating terrorist forces in Afghanistan," Geng said.

The hasty withdrawal of foreign troops has likely provided opportunities for various terrorist organizations to make a comeback, he said.

China hopes that the security of the Kabul airport could be guaranteed, the evacuation of relevant personnel can proceed smoothly, and all parties concerned can strengthen coordination to jointly prevent a new terrorist attack, Geng said.

Afghanistan must never again become the birthplace for terrorism, or a distribution center for terrorists, which Geng called "the bottom line" that Afghanistan must adhere to in any future political settlements.

China hopes that the Taliban will fulfill their commitment and cut off ties with all terrorist organizations completely, Geng said.

Countries should follow the international laws and the Security Council resolutions to "resolutely crack down" on international terrorist forces such as the "Islamic State", "al-Qaida", and the "East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM)", so as to prevent them from gathering in Afghanistan to cause chaos, the envoy said.

Geng stressed that there should not be any double standard or selective approach on the issue of counterterrorism.

The 15-member council convened Monday afternoon to vote on a draft resolution proposed by the U.S., UK, and France. The resolution, which urged the Taliban to allow people to leave the war-ravaged country freely, passed with 13 votes in favor. China and Russia both abstained from the vote.

In explaining his vote, Geng said China has "huge doubts" about the necessity and urgency of adopting the resolution as well as the balance of its content. The draft was circulated by its authors Friday evening who demanded action be taken on Monday, he said.

Despite that, China participated constructively in the consultations and put forward important and reasonable amendments together with Russia. However, those amendments "have not been fully adopted", Geng said.

"China has always (been) opposed to imposing or forcefully pushing for resolution by any sponsors. Based on the above consideration, China has abstained from the draft resolution," he said.

Vassily Nebenzia, the Russian Federation's permanent representative to the UN, said he was forced to abstain on the draft resolution vote because its authors have ignored Russia's principled concerns. For one, the resolution did not mention ISIL and ETIM in the paragraph on counterterrorism, he said.

"We interpret it as unwillingness to recognize the obvious and an inclination to divide terrorists into "ours" and "theirs". Attempts to "downplay" threats emanating from these groups are unacceptable," he said.

Nebenzia also called out what he saw as "attempts to shift responsibility for the failure of the 20-year-long presence of the United States and its allies in Afghanistan to the Taliban movement and to the states of the region that will have to deal with the effects of this prolonged campaign".


Most popular in 24h

MoreTop news


Back to top About Us | Jobs | Contact Us | Privacy Policy
Copyright ©1999-2021 All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.