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News > World

China Calls For Respect For Small States and Multilateralism

  • Ambassador Zhang Jun.

    Ambassador Zhang Jun. | Photo: Twitter/ @zhang_heqing

Published 29 April 2022

"International rules should not be made out of the will of a few countries and be forced on other," Ambassador Zhang stressed.

On Thursday, China's permanent representative to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, called for respect for small states and the pursuit of true multilateralism.


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"We must stay committed to equality of all states regardless of their size, safeguard the authority and universal application of international law, and practice true multilateralism," he told a high-level roundtable on small states, multilateralism and international law.

The grave challenges for peace and development, intertwined with uncertainties and instabilities, are posing enormous pressure on small states. In times of crisis, it is more important to realize that humanity belongs to a community with a shared future, Zhang said.

"True multilateralism is about safeguarding the international system with the United Nations at its core. The purposes and principles of the UN Charter should be upheld. The sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries should be respected. The rights of all countries to independently choose their social systems and development paths should be protected."

"All too often, we see some countries, on certain occasions, say they respect the rights of other countries to choose their cooperation partners. Yet on other occasions, they make irresponsible slanders about other countries' normal interactions with third countries. It is unfair and unreasonable to ignore or even harm the interests of small states and force them to choose sides," Chinese envoy said.

Zhang also pointed out that "no country should abide by international law only when it suits its interests, and abandon it otherwise. International rules should not be made out of the will of a few countries and be forced on other. There is only one set of rules: the basic norms governing international relations underpinned by the UN Charter."

The high-level roundtable was hosted by the Permanent Mission of Singapore in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the Forum of Small States, which serves as an important platform for small states to discuss issues of common concern, exchange views and coordinate positions. The forum currently has over 100 members.


Zhang Jun
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