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Consultations yield consensus within UN Security Council on Syria, says Chinese FM spokesman

(Xinhua)

13:47, March 22, 2012

BEIJING, March 21 (Xinhua) -- China said here on Wednesday that equal, patient, and adequate consultations could yield consensus within the United Nations (UN) Security Council to address the Syria issue.

"The facts have proved that the UN Security Council could reach consensus and an united one voice to resolve the Syria issue by equal, patient, and adequate consultations", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said in a written statement.

The 15-nation Council adopted the presidential statement on Wednesday to voice "full support" for the peace efforts in Syria of Kofi Annan, the UN and Arab League joint special envoy.

The council said it fully supports Annan's efforts "to bring an immediate end to all violence and human rights violations, secure humanitarian access, and facilitate a Syrian-led political transition" in Syria.

A presidential statement, unlike Security Council resolutions, is not legally binding and adopted by 15 council members by consensus. The adoption of a resolution requires nine votes in favor and no vetoes from the five permanent members of the Security Council -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States.

Qin said the presidential statement made a positive step toward political settlement of the Syrian issue, noting that the six-point statement proposed by China gained more and more support from the international community.

"We call on the international community to support the mediation efforts by Annan, and create favorable conditions for his work," Qin said.

"China hopes the Syrian government and the relevant parties to actively support and coordinate the good-office of Annan, cease violence immediately, reflect political will and launch political dialogue as soon as possible in order to achieve an early political settlement of the Syrian crisis," Qin added.

Annan, the former UN secretary-general, met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad twice and Syrian opposition leaders in and outside Syria during his visit to the Middle East earlier this month. He asked both the Syrian government and the opposition to stop fighting immediately, ensure unhindered access of the humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people in need, and the early launch of the political process aimed at the political settlement of the Syrian crisis.

The spokesman also stressed that China follows closely on the development of situation in Syria, values and backs Annan's mediation activities to resolve the Syria issue by political means.

"China will continue to play its constructive role to promote the political process to resolve the Syria issue", Qin pledged.

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