Chinese, Russian FMs pledge joint efforts for political solution to Syrian issue

China and Russia on Thursday pledged to make joint efforts to seek a political solution to the ongoing Syrian issue as the two countries’ foreign ministers held talks in Beijing.

During a news conference after their talks, Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov reiterated the two nations’ support in the six-point plan for peace in Syria proposed by the UN-Arab League joint special envoy for Syria, Kofi Annan. Annan is working to bring an early end to the Syrian crisis which began in March 2011.

The two foreign ministers made the remarks after two blasts rocked Syria’s capital Damascus earlier in the day, killing 55 people.

“To appropriately address the Syrian issue, all sides concerned should respect Syria’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Yang said, adding that the development path of Syria should be decided by the Syrian people on their own.

Yang called for more efforts to persuade both the Syrian government and the opposition into honoring their words on ceasefire and starting a process of political dialogue at an early date.

The two ministers urged “outside forces” to stop disturbing Annan’s work and instigating new conflicts in Syria.

“Some countries are inciting outside forces to interference into the Syrian situation, which is unacceptable,” Lavrov told reporters.

During their talks, Yang and Lavrov also exchanged views on the Iranian nuclear issue, according to a press release after the talks.

The two officials hailed the “positive results” of the last round of nuclear talks between Iran and the UN Security Council’s five permanent members — the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China — plus Germany (P5+1) concluded in Turkey’s Istanbul in April.

“All the sides should maintain the good momentum of dialogue and negotiations, work to ensure that the forthcoming Baghdad talks achieve progress and make efforts to prevent the situation from getting out of control,” the two ministers were quoted in the release.

“China and Russia will continue their close coordination to ensure that the Iranian nuclear issue will be set on the diplomatic track,” said the release.

In response to a question on the Afghan situation, Yang said China supports Afghanistan in its efforts to realize peace, stability, independence and development at an early date, urging the international community to increase aid for the insurgency-inflicted country.

Lavrov is paying an official visit to China from Thursday to Friday to attend a meeting of the foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states.

During their talks, Yang and Lavrov also pledged closer communication and coordination between the two sides to advance the bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination in a stable way and make more contributions to peace, security and stability of the region and the world at large.


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