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China concerned over Russian embassy attack in Damascus
September 23, 2013, 11:51 am


China has urged all parties in Syria to agree to a cease fire and start political dialogue [AP]

China on Monday strongly condemned an attack on the Russian embassy in Damascus, and urged all sides in Syria to protect the safety of foreign diplomats.

“We are seriously concerned, and extend condolences to those injured,” said Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei at a regular press briefing.

Hong was reacting to the mortar shell attack on Sunday, which left three Russian diplomats injured.

A mortar shell landed in the compound of the Russian embassy in Mazzeh in central Damascus, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Sunday.

“Three employees received non-life threatening injuries. Right now an investigation of the incident is under way,” said the statement.

Mazzeh has been the epicentre of fierce clashes raging for days between the rebels and the Syrian government army.

Hong said all parties in Syria should strictly abide by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, and protect the safety of foreign missions and diplomats.

Hong also urged all parties in Syria to agree to a cease fire and start political dialogue.

China welcomes Syria’s submission of a full declaration of its chemical weapon inventory to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Hong said during Monday’s briefing.

Meanwhile, Russia has on Sunday criticised what it said were Western attempts to use a Syrian chemical arms disarmament deal to seek a UN resolution threatening force against Assad’s government.

“They see in the US-Russian deal not a chance to save the planet from significant quantities of chemical weapons in Syria, but as a chance to do what Russia and China will not allow, namely to push through a resolution involving [the threat of] force against the regime and shielding the opposition,” Interfax news agency cited Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying.

Lavrov noted that the West wanted the Security Council resolution not only to support the OPCW’s decision, but also to carry provisions on the defence of human rights and the International Criminal Court.

Source: Agencies 

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