Envoy proposes political settlement and terror fight in parallel

Updated: 2016-04-08 18:56

By Zhang Yunbi(chinadaily.com.cn)

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Envoy proposes political settlement and terror fight in parallel

Xie Xiaoyan, China's first Special Envoy for the Syrian Issue, made his media briefing debut in his new capacity on Friday in Beijing. [Photo by Zhang Yunbi/CHINA DAILY]

Xie Xiaoyan, China's Special Envoy for the Syrian Issue, stressed the need for an approach that "advances a political settlement and counterterrorism in parallel" at a media briefing in Beijing on Friday.

"The efforts to counter terrorists and extremists within Syria will also facilitate the political settlement of the Syria issue. It is also a good thing for counterterrorism endeavors in the wider region," Xie told China Daily at the briefing.

The international community should look at the larger picture of counterterrorism measures in Syria, work closely together and unify efforts, Xie suggested.

Xie, 62, noted that peace talks are the only viable way to solve the Syria issue. "This is what we learned from the past five years of turmoil in Syria, and this is also what we learn from the Middle East hotspot issues," he said.

The international community should continue to support mediation efforts by the UN Secretary-General's envoy for Syria, he said.

The world should also push the Syrian government and the opposition to "meet halfway, seek common ground and eliminate differences, and find a solution through dialogue and negotiation that addresses the concerns of various parties", he added.

The envoy also proposed measures be undertaken to achieve a comprehensive and durable cease-fire.

"Killings only intensify hatred, and make Syrian society more divided. Violence for violence's sake will lead to nowhere," he said.

Currently, the agreement on the cessation of hostilities endorsed by the UN Security Council is generally honored, and Xie called it "important progress made in seeking a political settlement of the Syria issue".

"Various parties should commit to peace and stability, consolidate what has been made possible by the cease-fire so as to create more favorable conditions for a sustainable and durable cease-fire,'' he said.

On consolidating and expanding humanitarian relief, Xie suggested that the international community should step up efforts to expand the pilot area for aid access to truly alleviate the sufferings of the Syrian people.

"At the same time, we should look at the problems in the process of humanitarian relief in a sensible manner and avoid turning the humanitarian issue into a political one," he added.