BEIJING, June 5 (Xinhua) -- China on Thursday called for all parties involved to adhere to a political settlement on the Syria issue after the country's incumbent President Bashar al-Assad was reelected.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said at a regular news briefing, "No matter how the Syria situation develops, a political settlement is always the only realistic way out of the problem, which should be adhered to."
The turmoil has entered into the fourth year, bringing profound devastation and suffering to the country and its people, Hong said.
The Syrian government, opposition and other relevant parties should put the country and people first and stop the fighting and violence and focus on the Geneva talks, Hong said.
President al-Assad won a third seven-year term in the election with 88.7 percent of the votes, the Syrian Parliament announced on Wednesday.
It was the first multi-candidate presidential election in Syria's modern history, which has been dismissed by the exiled opposition and their Western backers as a "farce".
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Nabil El-Araby, secretary-general of the Arab League, on Saturday agreed to jointly push for the resumption of the Geneva talks on the settlement of the conflict.
Two rounds of talks this year saw both sides sticking to their positions and yielded only modest cooperation on a humanitarian issue related to aid access in the long-besieged old city of Homs. A third round has been planned but not yet scheduled.
According to the UN, well over 100,000 people have been killed and an estimated 9 million others driven from their homes since opposition protesters first sought to oust President al-Assad and his government in March 2011.