BEIJING, Dec. 24 (Xinhua) -- China on Tuesday urged all sides in South Sudan to stop hostilities immediately and vowed to strengthen coordination with the international community to help stability return.
"As friend and cooperation partner of the South Sudanese people, China asks all parties for restraint and calm, to stop hostile action immediately and start negotiation as soon as possible," said Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming in a meeting with diplomatic envoys of member states of Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to China.
He said China hoped the parties could solve their disputes through dialogue and negotiation, end the crisis, and resume the country's peace and stability.
South Sudan's current situation is the main topic of the meeting between Zhang and envoys from Djibouti, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, and Sudan. Zhang said China was highly concerned by the current situation and worried about the conflict in the country.
"South Sudan is a new country, which should focus on national construction and development," he said, adding the armed conflict brought heavy losses to South Sudanese people's lives and property, and made its fragile economy even worse.
The continuous turmoil also affected South Sudan's neighboring countries including some IGAD members and impacted the overall peace and stability in Africa, which "was something the international community including China does not want to see," Zhang noted.
He stressed that China, as a sincere friend of the African people, always actively maintains Africa's peace and stability, and supports the African people to solve Africa's problems in an African way.
He spoke highly of the mediation team sent by IGAD to South Sudan, and called on IGAD to urge conflicting parties in South Sudan to keep calm and restrained and promote their negotiation.
China will continue promoting negotiation with its own way, and strengthen communication and coordination with IGAD, the African Union, and other relevant sides in the international community to jointly promote South Sudan to resume stability as soon as possible, Zhang added.
IGAD was established in 1986 with seven members of Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan and South Sudan.