Chinese envoy: Security Council should focus on core mandate

(Xinhua) 16:32, September 06, 2023

UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 6 (Xinhua) -- China's permanent representative to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, on Tuesday underscored that the Security Council should focus on its core mandate and be committed to solving practical issues.

"The council should focus on its core mandate. The world is facing fast-emerging crises and challenges. The council must carry out its mandate, but it is unable to take on too much, hence the need to focus its energies on addressing major issues that threaten peace and security," Zhang told the Security Council Open Debate on the working methods of the Security Council.

"We do not support thematic issues hogging excessive resources and overlapping and redundancy between the council and other UN bodies. Furthermore, we oppose the practice of individual members, out of political motives, pushing for the discussion of country-specific human rights issues at the council," he added.

Zhang said that the council's meetings, statements and documents are a means to an end, not the end itself.

"Holding a meeting does not mean an issue is resolved. The same is true for holding more meetings, which sometimes turn out to be counterproductive. We could begin by taking small steps to improve the council's efficiency and effectiveness."

The envoy underscored that the council should demonstrate inclusiveness in its work. "We support the council in continuing to invite the civil society briefers."

Regarding sanctions, Zhang said that China always maintains that the council should approach sanctions prudently and responsibly, carefully control their intensity and scope, and adjust or lift them to reflect changes on the ground.

Highlighting penholdership, Zhang said penholdership comes out of practice. The rules of procedure do not regulate it.

"We need to have more African members to serve as penholders for African issues. That African members cannot serve as penholders for African issues is unjustifiable," said Zhang.

"Improving the working method is integral to the Security Council reform. China has consistently supported reasonable and necessary reform of the council, giving priority to increasing the representation and voice of developing countries and, in particular, making special arrangements to give priority to the demands of Africa," he said.

Zhang underscored that the ultimate goal of political reform is for the council to improve, not worsen; to move forward, not backward; and for the general membership, not just a few countries, to benefit.

"I would like to reiterate that China stands ready to work with all parties to draw lessons from our past experience, develop new ideas, and take practical action to promote continuous improvements in the work with the Security Council so as to better safeguard international peace and security," said the ambassador.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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