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Posted on on August 17th, 2012
by Pincas Jawetz (


Chinese FM meets Syrian president's special envoy
Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi greets Syrian government envoy Bouthaina Shaaban in Beijing on Thursday. [Feng Yongbin / China Daily]

BEIJING – Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on Thursday met with Bouthaina Shaaban, the Syrian president’s special envoy and political and media adviser, on the current situation in Syria.

During the meeting, Yang said China is deeply concerned about the situation in Syria, which has become more and more severe recently.

China urges the Syrian government and parties concerned to implement UN Security Council resolutions, Annan’s six-point proposal and the Geneva communique agreed by the Action Group meeting of major world powers on June 30, immediately cease fire, stop violence and launch political dialogue, the foreign minister said.

He said China calls on the Syrian government and the opposition to start dialogue at an early date, initiate and push forward a political process led by the Syrian people so as to bring the nation out of its difficulties.

The international community and other parties involved need to play a positive role on the issue, according to Yang. The Syrian government must take substantial measures to meet the reasonable needs of the Syrian people to seek reform and safeguard their own interests, he added.

China hopes the Syrian government and the opposition coordinate with the international mediation efforts, Yang said.

He also briefed Shaaban on contact between China and the opposition groups in Syria and those dialogues’ mediation efforts, as well as China’s humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees.

Shaaban introduced the current situation in Syria. She said Syria’s government will coordinate with international mediation efforts, and is ready to work with relevant parties to seek ways to make the government forces and the opposition forces stop violence at the same time.

She said the Syrian government is willing to launch an inclusive dialogue with the opposition so as to promote a Syria-led political process and restore security and stability in the country.

Vice Foreign Minister Zhai Jun also met with Shaaban on Thursday.


and – just to show that China has a soft heart for the lepers of today’s world:

President Hu vows more cooperation with DPRK

President Hu Jintao said Friday that China is ready to work with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) to lift their traditional friendly and cooperative relationship to a new level. China, DPRK open new tourist route


on the other hand – syria is an Arab problem that Arab States will have to deal with:

United Kingdom welcomes the appointment of Lakhdar Brahimi as Special Representative for Syria

Speaking today, Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, Alistair Burt said:

“I welcome the announcement today by the United Nations and the League of Arab States that Lakhdar Brahimi will take on the role of Special Representative for Syria. The UK fully supports the appointment of Mr Brahimi and welcomes the vast experience he brings with him to this important role to seek a political solution to the violence in Syria. I hope the international community will join together in lending its full support to Mr Brahimi to work with all sides in the Syrian conflict to end the months of bloodshed. I look forward to an early opportunity to discuss with Mr Brahimi the ways in which the UK can support him and diplomatic efforts to end the violence in Syria.”

Lakhdar Brahimi is a former UN envoy to Afghanistan and Iraq and former Under-Secretary General of the Arab League. Mr Brahimi is a member of the Elders group, alongside Kofi Annan and Nelson Mandela. He also served as Algerian Foreign Minister between 1991 – 1993.



Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
August 17, 2012

The United States welcomes the decision by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and League of Arab States Secretary General Nabil El Araby to appoint a new Joint Special Representative for Syria. Lakhdar Brahimi will continue the pursuit of an end to the conflict and a peaceful transition in Syria. Five months ago, Kofi Annan agreed to take on the serious task of trying to bring an end to the brutal violence and forge a path toward a peaceful transition and a post-Assad Syria that is inclusive and representative of all Syrians. We are grateful for Mr. Annan’s service.

My message to Special Representative Brahimi is simple: The United States stands ready to support you and secure a lasting peace that upholds the legitimate aspirations for a representative government of the people of Syria. And to the Syrian people: you are not alone. The international community remains fully committed to a Syrian-led political transition leading to a pluralistic political system representing the will of the people. The international community is also committed to ensuring that those who commit atrocities will be identified and held accountable.

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