China will be putting forward a position paper on the political settlement of the Ukraine crisis, according to senior diplomat Wang Yi, as he called for peace efforts ahead of the first anniversary of the conflict. Wang, who is a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the announcement during a keynote address to the 59th Munich Security Conference in Germany.
Wang stated that in the forthcoming document, China will reiterate the propositions made by President Xi Jinping, which include the need to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, observe the principles of the United Nations Charter, take legitimate security concerns seriously, and support all efforts conducive to a peaceful settlement of the crisis. He stressed that China is not a party directly concerned but has been trying to facilitate peace talks and will stand firmly on the side of peace and dialogue.
Wang also reiterated China’s stance that nuclear war must never be fought and cannot be won, and called on countries to jointly oppose the use of biological and chemical weapons. He appealed to all sides to protect the safety of civil nuclear facilities and firmly opposed any attack on nuclear power stations. While expressing deep concerns over the expanded and extended Ukraine crisis, Wang said that China opposes reaping benefits from this crisis and does not add fuel to the fire.
President Xi proposed seeking a political settlement of disputes through dialogue the day after the outbreak of the conflict, and has always maintained that conflicts and wars produce no winner, that there is no simple solution to a complex issue, and confrontation between major countries must be avoided.
Wang warned that there are “some forces” that might not want to see peace talks materialize, saying they neither care about the lives of people in Ukraine nor the harm inflicted on Europe, and they might have “bigger strategic goals”. He expressed regret for the stalled peace talks and stressed that the conflict should not continue any longer.
During talks with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on the sidelines of the conference, Wang said China does not want to see the crisis extend to a large-scale, long-term conflict and will work with the international community to strive for peace. Kuleba said Ukraine attaches great importance to China’s international status and influence, as well as its position on a political solution to the crisis, adding he expects China to continue playing a constructive role.
China has made intensive diplomatic efforts on the Ukraine issue. Wang, both on the sidelines of the annual international security gathering and during his ongoing European tour, has reiterated China’s position and exchanged views with his counterparts on the issue. Cui Hongjian, director of the China Institute of International Studies’ European Studies Department, said the proposed release of a position paper shows that China is a responsible major country.
In contrast to Western countries increasing arms and munitions supplies to Ukraine and intensifying sanctions against Russia, Cui said that China does not provide any side with so-called support that may aggravate the conflict. Instead, Beijing tries its best to create favorable conditions for the settlement of the issue via negotiation.
Wang emphasized that the more complicated the situation is, the more urgent it is to adopt a calm and practical attitude, and the more protracted the flames of war are, the more countries can’t give up peace efforts. He said he hoped friends in Europe could think clearly about what efforts should be made to stop warfare, what framework is required to bring lasting peace and stability in Europe, and what role Europe should play to realize its strategic autonomy.
In conclusion, China’s efforts to facilitate peace talks and support the political settlement of the Ukraine crisis demonstrate the country’s commitment to promoting international peace and stability. It is hoped that the international community will work together to find a peaceful resolution to the conflict and prevent further escalation of tensions in the region.