China tells UNHRC to let SL choose its path

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China’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations hinted that ‘relevant parties’ should respect Sri Lanka’s right to independently choose its path to development.

While addressing the Council members of the United Nations Human Rights Council yesterday (13), China’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Chen Xu further noted, “China opposes any country taking advantage of current difficult situation in Sri Lanka to seek self-interest, and urges ‘relevant parties’ to respect the human rights development path that Sri Lanka has independently chosen according to its national conditions.

China also urges relevant parties to abandon the practice of using human rights to exert political pressure and interfere in other’s internal affairs.

Chen Xu further said that China firmly supports Sri Lanka to safeguard its sovereignty, independence, to maintain social stability and achieve economic recovery.

“I expounded firm support to Sri Lanka to safeguard its sovereignty and independence, maintain social stability and achieve economic recovery. I urged relevant parties to respect Sri Lanka’s right to choose independently the path to development.”

He added that China appreciates Sri Lanka’s continued efforts in enhancing and protecting its human rights, especially in reconciliation, reconstruction and counter-terrorism.

As a traditional friendly neighbour of Sri Lanka, China firmly supports the country in safeguarding national sovereignty and independence, maintaining social stability and realising economic recovery. We believe the Sri Lankan Government is able to lead the people to overcome temporary difficulties.

The Resolution on Sri Lanka, he said, “is a product of politicisation,  which doesn’t abide by the principles of impartiality, objectivity and non-selectivity, has not been recognised by Sri Lanka, the country concerned, has not played a constructive role in promoting and protecting human rights in Sri Lanka.”

Joining the debate, Türkiye requested the Council to extend the time frame for Sri Lanka to fulfil its obligations to the United Nations Human Rights Council during these difficult times, considering the current social and economic challenges.

Also, the UN representative from Iran stated at the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council should not politicise but should avoid political prejudices toward any country. “These mechanisms should not be utilised to further the political objectives of a specific group of nations against developing countries.”

South Sudan stated that human rights must always be protected with the consent of the country concerned.

Syria, on the other hand, praised Sri Lanka for confronting the problems of the social and economic crisis.

“We restate our rejection of Western interventionist agendas that use human rights issues to implement political objectives and interfere in the internal affairs of the world’s countries,” the Syrian representative to the UN said.

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan