China faz agulha e exorta o Governo da Síria a dialogar com rebeldes

Leio no The Independent:

China urged the Syrian government and rebels trying to oust President Bashar al-Assad to end all acts of violence, especially against civilians.

It also urged the government and rebels to "launch an inclusive political dialogue with no preconditions" under the mediation of the newly appointed UN-Arab League envoy on the Syria crisis, former UN secretary general Kofi Annan.
"The Syrian government and all parties concerned should immediately, fully and unconditionally cease all acts of violence, particularly violence against innocent civilians," said a foreign ministry statement carried by Xinhua news agency early on Sunday Beijing time and monitored in London. "It is deeply worrying that the situation in Syria remains grave," a Chinese foreign ministry official said.

But since violent clashes were continuing, political dialogue could not yet start and prospects for a peaceful settlement to the crisis were still dim, the official said.
Syrian forces bombarded parts of the shattered city of Homs today and for a second day blocked Red Cross aid meant for civilians stranded for weeks without food and fuel in the former rebel stronghold, activists and aid workers said.
The renewed government assault came a day after UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon said he had received reports that Assad's troops were executing, imprisoning and torturing people in Syria's third largest city.
The United Nations says security forces have killed more than 7,500 civilians during an 11-month government crackdown on pro-democracy protesters. The government says 2,000 members of the seccurity forces have been killed.
The statement said China supported the United Nations' leading role in coordinating humanitarian relief efforts and was ready to provide humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people.
But it added: "We oppose anyone interfering in Syria's internal affairs under the pretext of 'humanitarian' issues."
The international community should respect the independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Syria and the right of the Syrian people to independently choose their political system, the statement said.
It said China did not approve of armed interference or pushing for "regime change" in Syria, and the use or threat of sanctions did not help resolve the issue.
China and Russia joined other UN Security Council members on Thursday in expressing "deep disappointment" at Syria's failure to allow the UN humanitarian aid chief Valerie Amos to visit the country and urged that she be allowed in immediately.
China and Russia have twice vetoed Security Council resolutions condemning Damascus and calling for an end to the violence, saying Western and Arab nations are pushing for Libya-style "regime change" in Syria.
Russia, China and Cuba voted against a resolution adopted overwhelmingly on Thursday by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council which condemned Syria for violations that it said may amount to crimes against humanity.

China urges Syrian government and rebels to start dialogue

Red Cross teams remained locked out of the devastated Baba Amr district in Homs last night, as China, while still opposing military intervention in the country, piled pressure on the Syrian regime to end the crisis.
With volunteers from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) still denied access to Baba Amr three days after the Syrian government supposedly gave them a green light, the organisation's volunteers began handing out aid and medical supplies to civilians living around the neighbourhood. "We are very concerned about the people in Baba Amr," the ICRC's Damascus-based spokesman Saleh Dabbakeh said yesterday, after activists claimed the government's reticence stemmed from its fears that volunteers will discover evidence of war crimes.
Hundreds of civilians from the neighbourhood have reportedly been killed over the past month, as the Syrian government launched a day-by-day barrage of rockets and shells to root out rebel fighters who had seized control of the neighbourhood. In one of the coldest winters in recent memory, families were struggling to survive a constant hail of artillery fire without electricity, water or communications.
Journalists have also been caught in the violence, and last night the bodies of the veteran Sunday Times correspondent Marie Colvin and the French photographer Remi Ochlik, both of whom were killed in the bombardment of Baba Amr last month, arrived in Paris.
The American-born Ms Colvin's body was expected to be flown to the United States from France either today or tomorrow. When the Syrian military eventually seized control of Baba Amr on Thursday, activists claimed that soldiers killed dozens of civilians in a series of execution-style murders. The government of Bashar al-Assad has said its campaign was being waged against "terrorists" and armed groups.
Yesterday, there was a fresh diplomatic push to end the violence from China, a country that has so far steadfastly refused to endorse Western efforts to find a solution through the United Nations Security Council. A post on China's Foreign Ministry website called for an immediate end to the killings in Syria and suggested renewed efforts to deliver humanitarian aid and kick-start negotiations through the UN and Arab League. But the proposal also rejected outright any military intervention or attempts to topple the government. "We oppose anyone interfering in Syria's internal affairs under the pretext of 'humanitarian' issues," the post said. "China does not approve of armed interference or pushing for 'regime change' in Syria."
Beyond Homs there were further eruptions of violence across Syria yesterday. In Rastan, a town 12 miles north of Baba Amr which has become a bolthole for defected soldiers, heavy shelling was reported from government positions, while gun battles raged in the northern town of Jebel al-Zawiya.
Baathist artillery gunners also launched shells into the border town of Qusair, south of Homs, in an attack that sent hundreds of civilians fleeing towards neighbouring Lebanon.
"The people said they were sat at home and suddenly the shelling started and they fled," Afif Diab told the Reuters news agency.
"They said it was tank shelling and gunfire."

via The Independent

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