BEIJING, Jan. 9 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the Syria issue can only be resolved politically and "there can be no other way," according to a news release from the foreign ministry on Thursday.
Wang made the remarks in recent exclusive interview with Al Jazeera.
Wang was quoted as saying that the war in Syria has been going on for three years and people have now realized that war can resolve nothing and violence can only breed hatred.
"This is why more and more countries have come to favor a return to the track of political settlement."
He said that to make the Geneva II conference a success, much work remains to be done, and "the most pressing task is to put an end to the war and violence."
At the same time, the work to destroy Syrian chemical weapons must not stop. The process should move forward step by step, until a complete and thorough destruction of all such weapons is achieved, he noted.
Geneva II provides an important platform for a political settlement of the Syria issue, and the international community, including China, should create an enabling environment and atmosphere to this end, whereby urging the two sides in Syria to sit down at the negotiating table, Wang said.
Others may offer suggestions, make proposals, and submit plans, but only for the two sides in Syria to consider. Nothing should be imposed on them, he said.
"The Syria issue, ultimately, needs to be resolved through equal-footed negotiations between the two sides in Syria. Such negotiations are expected to be tortuous, and not smooth at all," Wang said.
He expressed the hope that the negotiations will not only take place but also continue. "Though time-consuming, as the negotiations may be, we must do our best to keep their momentum."
China has already done a lot of work to promote Geneva II. So China hopes the conference will start on Jan. 22 as scheduled and will play its due role at the conference, Wang said.
[Video]Chinese frigate escorts Syria's chemical weapons
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