China opposes "safe areas" in Syria
Turkish proposal for a "safe area" in Syria for civilians fleeing the fighting would not help resolve the humanitarian crisis arising from the conflict between President Bashar al-Assad's forces and insurgents, said Monday the newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party.
Turkey, which is hosting on its soil over 80,000 Syrian refugees on Wednesday urged the UN to create a "safe area", which would probably require the establishment of a no-fly zone, but a meeting of the UN Council Security ended the next evening without tangible results, despite the support of France.
"The contributions of the neighboring countries of Syria (...) should be supported, and we understand they offer ideas to ease the pressure on them," it was written in the People's Daily. "But the establishment of" safe havens "in Syria is not a good measure," continued the newspaper. "As clearly stated by the head of the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees), Antonio Guterres, history shows that the so-called" safe havens "can not, so to speak, provide real protection for refugees."
Meanwhile, Gulf Arab monarchies called yesterday for a "peaceful transfer of power" in Syria during a meeting in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The six countries have also urged "the international community to assume its responsibilities and take effective measures to protect civilians" in Syria. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC - Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Oman, Qatar and Kuwait) also "condemned the continued massacres because of the obstinacy of the regime to use all heavy weapons, including aircraft and tanks, "and called to "intensify Arab and international efforts to stop the bloodshed. "
The meeting has also declared its support for the new international mediator to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, and stressed "the importance of developing a new strategy and a clear plan to achieve a peaceful transfer of power. "
The six countries have also ordered Tehran to stop its "interference" in their internal affairs and criticized the Iranian television for substitution of the word "Syria" with "Bahrain" in the translation of the speech by Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi who was attacking the regime in Damascus at the opening of the summit of Non-Aligned Countries in Tehran.