BEIJING, March 16 (Xinhua) -- China on Sunday called for a political solution instead of confrontation after the United Nations Security Council failed to adopt a draft resolution on the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.
"China does not agree to a move of confrontation," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said in response to a question after the vote on Saturday.
Russia vetoed the draft resolution, drawn up by the United States and backed by Western countries, that declared that a planned referendum slated for Sunday on the status of Ukraine's Crimea region "can have no validity" and urged nations and international organizations not to recognize it.
"The vote on the draft resolution by the Security Council at this juncture will only result in confrontation and further complicate the situation, which is not in conformity with the common interests of both the people of Ukraine and those of the international community," Qin said, explaining why China, a permanent Security Council member, abstained from the vote.
China always respects the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states, which is the long-standing fundamental foreign policy of China, said the spokesman.
Qin said the Chinese side had taken into consideration the complex historical and realistic causes for the Ukraine situation in an inclusive and balanced way when making its decision.
"In the current situation, we call on all sides to remain calm and exercise restraint to avoid further escalation of the tensions," Qin said, adding that what is most pressing now is finding a political solution.
"China holds an objective and fair position on the Ukraine issue," said the spokesman.
He said China will continue to mediate and promote dialogue to play a constructive role in bringing about a political solution to the crisis in Ukraine.
Quoting China's permanent representative to the United Nations Liu Jieyi, Qin urged all sides to establish as soon as possible an international coordinating mechanism of all concerned parties to explore means to a political settlement of the Ukraine crisis.
"All parties in the meantime should refrain from taking any action that may further escalate the situation," he stressed.