A Chinese envoy on Friday called on countries concerned to stop imposing unilateral sanctions outside the framework of the Security Council.
Geng Shuang, China's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, made the appeal in an explanation of vote after the Security Council adopted a resolution on establishing a standing humanitarian exemption to the asset freeze measures imposed by the United Nations.
Resolution 2664 clarifies the relationship between humanitarian assistance and sanctions and dispels the concerns and worries of the providers of assistance, he said. "We hope that the member states and international humanitarian agencies will actively implement the humanitarian exemptions provided for in the resolution and prevent an expanded interpretation and over-compliance of the sanctions."
China also hopes that the international community, especially developed countries, will scale up humanitarian assistance and provide more substantive support for humanitarian operations, he added.
"At the same time, the international community should pay great attention to the negative impact of unilateral sanctions on humanitarian operations," said Geng.
Undeniably, the greatest legal and political risks faced by humanitarian agencies do not come from Security Council sanctions, but from the increasing unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction of some countries. Those measures often bring about great chaos and disasters and create and exacerbate humanitarian crises, he said.
"We hope that the countries concerned will uphold the spirit of humanity embodied in the just adopted Security Council Resolution 2664, and stop imposing unilateral sanctions outside the framework of the Security Council as soon as possible," he said.
The Security Council should establish clear and feasible exit arrangements for existing sanctions mechanisms, conduct regular reviews and adjust or lift sanctions in a timely manner, said Geng.
Resolution 2664 must not lead to the perpetuation and permanence of some sanctions mechanisms that are long overdue for adjustment. China will work with other council members to continue to promote the improvement of sanctions mechanisms in a responsible manner so as to minimize the negative impact of sanctions on humanitarian activities and livelihoods, he said.
Sanctions are a unique tool given to the Security Council by the UN Charter. China has always maintained that the Security Council should approach the issue of sanctions in a prudent and responsible manner and avoid abuses that could have negative humanitarian impacts.
China supports the Security Council's action to improve the sanctions regime and voted in favor of the draft resolution, he said.