Remarks by Ambassador Zhang Jun at Security Council VTC on the Situation in the Central African Republic
21 January 2021
I wish to thank SRSG Ndiaye for his briefing. I would also like to welcome Foreign Minister of the Central African Republic Her Excellency Ms. Baipo-Temon to this meeting. The Security Council is convening this open meeting at the request of the CAR government to speak with one voice, which is of great significance to maintaining peace in CAR.
The situation in CAR is at a critical juncture. After concluding the general election despite difficulties, the country has entered a new stage of development. Meanwhile, there are potential hazards to political stability. The security situation is still fragile, and many challenges remain in the realization of long-term stability. Hereby I wish to emphasize the following points.
First, we must respect the choices made by the people of CAR. On January 18, the Constitutional Court announced the final result of the election. China congratulates President Touadéra on his election. We believe that with the help of the international community, the people and government of CAR will make greatest strides on the road to national development. China calls on all parties concerned to put the interests of the country and its people first, respect the final decision of the Constitutional Court on the election, abide by the peace agreement, renounce violence, and resolve disputes peacefully within the national legal framework. China commends the efforts of the AU and the ECCAS in stabilizing the situation in CAR, and supports a greater role by the two organizations.
Second, we must support CAR in improving its security capabilities. The country is facing a daunting task in safeguarding national sovereignty and security and protecting the safety of its people. The international community should vigorously support the CAR government in building its security forces, so that they can assume the primary responsibility of maintaining stability and managing borders as soon as possible. In light of the situation on the ground and the strong wishes expressed by the government, the Security Council should lift the arms embargo at an early date, and create more favorable conditions for improving the country’s security capacities and promoting a political settlement to the CAR issue.
Third, we must support MINUSCA to continue to implement its mandate effectively. For a while, MINUSCA has played a critical role in supporting the legitimate government of CAR and ensuring the smooth convening of the election. China highly commends its efforts. In recent weeks, MINUSCA has provided security guarantee and convenience for the transfer of civilians of the CAR and diaspora of various countries, including 64 Chinese nationals who were trapped in a conflict. I wish to express my special thanks to SRSG Ndiaye and MINUSCA. China supports the temporary strengthening of the Mission’s military capacity through intermission cooperation based on the situation on the ground, so that MINUSCA would have sufficient resources to implement its mandate. Recently, MINUSCA was under attack multiple times, resulting in the unfortunate killings of peacekeepers from Burundi, Rwanda, Gabon, Morocco, among others. It is imperative to pay close attention to this, identify the causes through careful analysis and effectively strengthen security measures to ensure the safety of peacekeepers in accordance with the requirements of Security Council resolution 2518.
Fourth, we must step up assistance and the development cooperation with CAR. The active participation of its people in the general election reflects their aspiration for national development and a happy and stable life. The international community should increase assistance to CAR and support its efforts in the prevention and control of the pandemic, the restoration of the economy, and the improvement of people’s livelihoods, so that infrastructure development can be further advanced after security situation is stabilized, energy and resource advantages can be translated into development potentials, and through the sharing of peace and development dividends, the root causes of violent conflict can be gradually eliminated, and the lasting peace can be achieved through development.
CAR is China’s good friend, partner and brother in Africa. China vigorously supports its efforts in maintaining stability and promoting development. We have provided support within our capabilities to CAR in its fight against COVID-19 and in preparation for the general election. China will work with the international community to make continuous contributions to peace and development in CAR.
Thank you, Mr. President.