1st LD Writethru: Chinese envoy asks for int'l efforts to promote peace in Africa

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UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 4 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese envoy on Monday asked for international efforts to promote peace and stability in Africa, particularly the Horn of Africa.

There is a need to promote the settlement of differences through dialogue and consultation, said Wu Haitao, China's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations.

The world body and the international community should, on the basis of respect for state sovereignty, actively mediate and facilitate peace talks, help regional countries build trust, resolve hot spot issues politically, and provide an enabling environment for the survival and development of women affected by conflict, Wu told a Security Council meeting on peace and security in Africa.

The council was briefed by UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed on a UN-African Union joint mission to the Horn of Africa, which was focused on women, peace and security, and development.

In this context, Wu said China has always supported African countries' efforts to seek African solutions to African problems and to engage women as major players in conflict prevention and mediation, while ensuring their full involvement in decision-making and in post-conflict peacebuilding and national development processes.

Wu also asked the international community to respect the leading role of the countries concerned.

The countries concerned, he said, bear the primary responsibility for protecting women in conflict, and should adopt an integrated approach to protect women and provide them with humanitarian relief, and resolutely combat violations of women's rights in conflict.

The international community should fully respect, trust and support African countries, and provide constructive assistance in response to the needs of the countries concerned, said Wu.

The UN Security Council, the Peacebuilding Commission, UN Women, and other relevant agencies should, in accordance with their respective mandates, maximize their respective advantages and strengthen coordination to jointly promote women's important role in the field of peace and security, he said.

Wu asked the international community to attach importance to economic and social development in the Horn of Africa. "We must prioritize economic and social development and strive to eliminate the root causes of conflict by promoting the comprehensive economic and social development of regional countries."

The Horn of Africa faces the issues of unemployment and refugees. The international community should help African countries tackle their development challenges, strengthen capacity building, and leverage the role of conflict-affected women in contributing to regional peace and security, said Wu.

The United Nations should make full use of such mechanisms as its country teams and the UN Development Programme to provide constructive assistance in order to improve the capacity of African countries in sustainable development, he added.

Stability in the Horn of Africa, which is strategically located, has a bearing on the overall peace and development in Africa, said Wu.

China and Africa have always been a community of shared future, said the Chinese envoy. China firmly supports African countries in their efforts to maintain regional peace and stability. China is willing to work with African countries and the wider international community to promote the United Nations' work on women, peace and security, and make new contributions to peace and development in Africa, said Wu. Enditem

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