Chinese envoy asks for peace through development in Colombia

Source: Xinhua| 2020-07-15 10:21:56|Editor: huaxia

UNITED NATIONS, July 14 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese envoy on Tuesday asked for efforts to promote peace through development in Colombia.

China is of the view that in order to fully, effectively and sustainably implement the peace agreement in Colombia, focus should be on a proper balance and synergy between development and security, said Yao Shaojun, minister counselor of China's Permanent Mission to the United Nations.

Development and security are interdependent and inseparable. The development perspective should be stressed to promote peace through development, he told the Security Council, which was hearing a briefing from Carlos Ruiz Massieu, the UN secretary-general's special representative for Colombia.

Rural reform, development programs, and poverty relief and eradication feature prominently in the Colombian peace agreement. They also represent a conclusive approach to tackling the root causes of the conflict, he said.

China encourages the Colombian government to overcome the difficulties, carry on the development programs, and ramp up its efforts to promote balanced, inclusive, and sustainable development, especially by helping those who have no land or insufficient land to gain access to it.

China supports the efforts of the Colombian government to strengthen infrastructure development in territories most affected by the conflict, including transport, irrigation, and electricity, and to provide essential public services, including education, health care, and housing, in order to narrow the urban-rural disparities and those between territories, said Yao.

China has been supporting the Colombian peace process with concrete action, he said. The two countries have had productive cooperation in such areas as agriculture, poverty reduction, energy, and mining. A number of joint infrastructure projects, such as highways and coal-fired power stations, are contributing to Colombia's development. In order to ease the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chinese government and businesses have donated personal protective equipment and medical supplies to Colombia.

China will continue to help Colombia achieve sustainable development and lasting peace, said Yao.

In recent months, the Colombian government and other stakeholders have worked together to overcome the difficulties posed by COVID-19, and to continue promoting rural reform, poverty reduction through development, the reintegration of former combatants, institutional building and judicial development, he noted.

The follow-up mechanisms to the peace agreement are functioning effectively, and the peace-building process is making headway. China commends and supports the positive efforts of the Colombian government in this regard, he said.

Massieu and the UN Verification Mission in Colombia that he heads have been providing valuable assistance to Colombia in implementing the peace agreement. China commends their efforts and is looking forward to the mission playing a greater role in Colombia's peace and stability on the basis of respect for the country's sovereignty, independence, unity, and territorial integrity, he said.

China hopes that the Colombian government and other stakeholders will, for their part, genuinely take up their own responsibilities and obligations, work for the greater good of the country and its people, and support the good offices of the UN Verification Mission so that the Colombian peace process can go from strength to strength with a greater abundance of solid deliverables, said Yao.

The Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) struck a peace deal in August 2016 after four years of negotiations in Havana, Cuba, ending a five-decades-long conflict in the country. The UN Verification Mission in Colombia is tasked to verify the reintegration of former FARC fighters. Enditem