Remarks by Ambassador Geng Shuang at Security Council Briefing on UNITAD
10 May 2021
China thanks Special Adviser Karim Khan for his briefing. In the past three years, he has led UNITAD in collecting evidence of crimes committed by ISIL, pursued accountability against terrorist acts, done a great deal of work, and made much progress, which has China’s positive evaluation. Mr. Karim Khan is about to leave for his new post, and I wish him every success in The Hague. I also wish to thank Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Ms. Murad for her statement and briefing.
We have read the sixth report submitted by Special Adviser Karim Khan, and I welcome the results of the investigation into the attacks against the Yazidi community and the attack on the Tikrit Air Academy. We hope that these developments will bring comfort to survivors including Ms. Murad.
UNITAD has collected a large amount of evidence of crimes committed by ISIL. Only their timely transfer to the Government of Iraq can translate into tangible results of holding terrorists accountable, thereby achieving the intended objectives of Resolution 2379. We hope that UNITAD will hand over evidence to the Iraqi side in a timely and complete manner in accordance with the relevant Council resolutions.
Terrorism is the common enemy of humanity. The international community should continue to support Iraq in its fight against terrorism, bring terrorists to justice and consolidate hard-won counter-terror gains. At the same time, the international community should also earnestly respect Iraq’s sovereignty and jurisdiction over crimes committed on the Iraqi territory, and support Iraq in its pursuit of accountability against terrorists in accordance with domestic laws. We appreciate Iraq’s active effort to take forward its domestic legislation to hold former ISIL terrorists accountable. All the parties concerned and the UN should also support Iraq in dealing with FTFs (foreign terrorist fighters) within its territory.
In its report, UNITAD put forward some preliminary ideas around the completion strategy, and China encourages the investigative team to fully communicate and coordinate with the Government of Iraq in this regard. The Council should study and discuss the relevant issues in due course.