China's envoy at UN Li Baodong "National reconciliation is the only way to build lasting peace in Somalia"
Friday, June 07, 2013
China on Thursday called on the United Nations and the international community to continue to play an active and constructive role in addressing the Somalia issue and advancing the peace process in the country.
Li Baodong, China's permanent representative to the United Nations, said at an open Security Council meeting on the situation in Somalia that "We support the new government of Somalia in implementing an interim Constitution, carrying out its six-point plan, strengthening institutional capacity, exercising government functions and extending effective authority over all its national territory."
The Chinese envoy stressed that national reconciliation is the only way to build lasting peace in Somalia, urging different factions in the country to renounce violence and to join the peace process unconditionally as soon as possible.
"We hope the Somali parties will, for the greater good of national stability and development, strengthen unity and cooperation, and bridge their differences through dialogue and consultations, preserve the national integrity and stability, and promote economic and social development," he said.
Li also drew attention to the efforts of the African Union, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and other regional organizations in addressing the Somalia issue.
"We hope that, when dealing with the issue, the United Nations and the international community will further strengthen coordination with regional countries and organizations, and take fully into account their views," he said.
However, he noted, this should be done on the basis of respecting Somalia's sovereignty.
In addition, Li called for rapid and full deployment of the recently established UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (USM), as well as increased financial assistance to the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM).
Last month, the Security Council unanimously voted to establish a new UN mission in Somalia to gradually take over the peacekeeping tasks currently performed by AMISOM. The mandate of this political mission began on Monday for an initial period of one year.
Somalia has been torn asunder by factional fighting since 1991 but has recently made progress towards stability. In 2011, Islamist Al-Shabaab insurgents retreated from Mogadishu and last year new government institutions emerged, as the country ended a transitional phase and will hold national elections in 2016.