News / Asia

    China Defends its Veto of UN Resolution on Syria

    Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Li Baodong addresses the Security Council in New York after a vote on a U.N. resolution backing an Arab League peace plan on the Syrian crisis, February 4, 2012.
    Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Li Baodong addresses the Security Council in New York after a vote on a U.N. resolution backing an Arab League peace plan on the Syrian crisis, February 4, 2012.

    China strongly defended its veto of a United Nations Security Council resolution on Syria again Monday, saying its decision was ultimately aimed at avoiding more casualties.

    Monday's Foreign Ministry briefing was dominated by China's decision, along with Russia's, to block the resolution condemning Syria's crackdown on anti-government protesters and calling for President Bashar al-Assad to resign.

    VOA’s Ira Mellman spoke about the Chinese veto with Clayton Dube, Executive Director of the US-China Institute at the University of Southern California.

    Dube said the move by Beijing follows “a well-established pattern of resisting calls for regime change.”

    Spokesman Liu Weimin said China has been actively involved in U.N. efforts to address the Syrian crisis, but sees the latest resolution as divisive and ineffective.

    China vetoed the resolution, said Liu, because it feels that supporters pushed through the vote while different sides were still "seriously divided." Thirteen of the 15 council members voted in favor of the measure.

    This kind of practice, Liu added, does not help maintain unity within the U.N. Security Council nor does it solve the Syrian issue. Liu went on to say China is paying close attention to the situation in Syria and is calling on all sides there to stop violence. Beijing's ultimate goal, he said, is to avoid casualties of innocent civilians and restore normal order in Syria.

    The spokesman did not directly respond to questions for comment about the rising death toll in Syria, where the opposition accuses government troops of regular attacks in the Syrian city, Homs.

    He also rejected Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's description of the Chinese and Russian vetoes as “a travesty.”

    Liu said China does not accept the accusation, adding that China is not trying to favor any side in Syria's civil conflict.  China sees itself as “a responsible major country,” and will continue to work with the international community for a positive outcome, Lui said.

    Sun Zhe, international studies professor at Tsinghua University, believes there is still still room to negotiate stronger international action on Syria. If the situation deteriorates even further, China and Russia could still change their positions, said Sun, arguing that Western countries that are calling for sanctions should continue their discussions.

    China is following Russia's lead on the Syria issue, but Sun acknowledged that Beijing also has its own concerns. Chinese leaders see the Syrian government's actions as “extremist,” he said, but are afraid of Western intervention because, they do not want to see another Libya or another Egypt.

    Russia's foreign minister is due in Syria on Tuesday. The Chinese spokesman said he had no information as to whether Chinese officials would be heading to Damascus anytime in the immediate future.

    You May Like

    Pentagon: Afghan Hospital Bombing Not a War Crime

    US Central Command's Joseph Votel says probe found tragedy was result of 'extraordinarily intense situation' that included multiple equipment failures

    US Minorities Link Guns with Other Social Ills

    New study finds reduction in gun violence could help lower America’s incarceration rate – the world’s highest - and improve relationships between police, citizens in minority communities

    US Millennials Beat Baby Boomers as Largest Living Generation

    America's young people are about to take over and here's what we can expect from them

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensionsi
    X
    April 29, 2016 12:28 AM
    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensions

    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Bangladesh Targeted Killings Spark Wave of Fear

    People in Bangladesh’s capital are expressing deep concern over the brutal attacks that have killed secular blogger, and most recently a gay rights activist and an employee of the U.S. embassy. Xulhaz Mannan, an embassy protocol officer and the editor of the country’s only gay and transgender magazine Roopban; and his friend Mehboob Rabbi Tanoy, a gay rights activist, were hacked to death by five attackers in Mannan’s Dhaka home earlier this month.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.
    Video

    Video West Urges Unity in Libya as Migrant Numbers Soar

    The Italian government says a NATO-led mission aimed at stemming the flow of migrants from Libya to Europe could be up and running by July. There are concerns that the number of migrants could soar as the route through Greece and the Balkans remains blocked. Western powers say the political chaos in Libya is being exploited by people smugglers — and they are pressuring rival groups to come together under the new unity government. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Russia’s TV Rain Swims Against Tide in Sea of Kremlin Propaganda

    Russia’s media freedoms have been gradually eroded under President Vladimir Putin as his government has increased state ownership, influence, and restrictions on critical reporting. Television, where most Russians get their news, has been the main target and is now almost completely state controlled. But in the Russian capital, TV Rain stands out as an island in a sea of Kremlin propaganda.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora