De-escalation should lead to ceasefire, no to nuclear arms: China’s Ukraine peace plan | World News - Hindustan Times
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De-escalation should lead to ceasefire, no to nuclear arms: China’s Ukraine peace plan

Feb 24, 2023 04:06 PM IST

On Friday, China said it wants to prevent the Russia-Ukraine crisis from getting out of control, adding that dialogue and negotiation are the only viable ways to resolve the conflict.

China on Friday called for a “gradual” de-escalation of the Russia-Ukraine crisis and an eventual “comprehensive ceasefire” in a 12-point position paper to end the war as Moscow’s invasion of the eastern European country dragged into the second year, shrouding the world in a post-pandemic gloom.

China's deputy United Nations Ambassador Dai Bing addresses the U.N. General Assembly before a vote for a U.N. resolution upholding Ukraine's territorial integrity and calling for a cessation of hostilities after Russia's invasion. (AP)
China's deputy United Nations Ambassador Dai Bing addresses the U.N. General Assembly before a vote for a U.N. resolution upholding Ukraine's territorial integrity and calling for a cessation of hostilities after Russia's invasion. (AP)

Tens of thousands have been killed and millions have flown war-torn areas as the conflict shows no sign of abating with countries primarily divided into two camps: the US-led Western powers and Russia with its seemingly carte blanche support from China and a handful other allies.

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On Friday, China, which has blamed the US and its allies for fanning the war and creating aggressive and “hegemonic” security blocs, said it wants to prevent the Russia-Ukraine crisis from getting out of control, adding that dialogue and negotiation are the only viable ways to resolve the conflict.

“Conflict and war benefit no one. All parties must stay rational and exercise restraint, avoid fanning the flames and aggravating tensions, and prevent the crisis from deteriorating further or even spiraling out of control,” the statement, released on the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, said.

“Dialogue and negotiation are the only viable solution to the Ukraine crisis. All efforts conducive to the peaceful settlement of the crisis must be encouraged and supported,” the statement added.

The document, released by official news agency, Xinhua, is Beijing’s latest efforts to portray itself as a broker of peace even as Beijing stays firmly committed to its “no-limits” friendship with Moscow, and increasingly tense ties with the West.

China’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, in fact, said in Moscow on Tuesday that Beijing’s ties with Moscow are “solid as a rock.”

The Chinese position paper spoke about “Keeping nuclear power plants safe” and against the use of chemical and biological weapons.

“China opposes armed attacks against nuclear power plants or other peaceful nuclear facilities, and calls on all parties to comply with international law including the Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS) and resolutely avoid man-made nuclear accidents,” the paper said.

“Nuclear weapons must not be used and nuclear wars must not be fought. The threat or use of nuclear weapons should be opposed. Nuclear proliferation must be prevented and nuclear crisis avoided. China opposes the research, development and use of chemical and biological weapons by any country under any circumstances,” the paper said.

Reacting to the position paper, Leshchynska Zhanna, the charge d’affaires at the Ukrainian embassy in Beijing, called it a “good sign”.

She said it is a “good sign and a sign that China wants to be involved in the global efforts to stop the war in Ukraine,” Reuters reported Friday.

Zhanna called for China to offer more support to Ukraine, saying, “Ukraine would like to see China on its side, at the moment China is not supporting Ukraine’s efforts.”

“We hope they (China) also urge Russia to stop the war and withdraw its troops,” the Reuters report quoted her as saying.

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