Chinese and Indonesian Foreign Ministers Call for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza

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Chinese and Indonesian Foreign Ministers Call for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza, Criticize U.S. Stance at U.N.

After their meeting in Jakarta, the Chinese and Indonesian foreign ministers issued a call for an immediate and lasting ceasefire in Gaza, highlighting the grave humanitarian implications of the conflict, which has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of Palestinians.

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During a press conference, Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi emphasized the consensus between the two nations on the need for a ceasefire and the pursuit of a two-state solution to resolve the Palestinian issue. “I am sure that China would use its influence to prevent escalation,” Marsudi stated, also noting that both countries “would also fully support Palestine’s membership in the U.N.

This discussion occurred on the second day of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s six-day diplomatic tour, which will also include stops in Papua New Guinea and Cambodia.

Wang criticized the United States for blocking ceasefire resolutions at the U.N. “The conflict in Gaza has lasted for half a year and caused a rare humanitarian tragedy in the 21st century. The United Nations Security Council responded to the call of the international community and continued to review the resolution draft on the ceasefire in Gaza, but it was repeatedly vetoed by the United States,” Wang explained.

He also pointed out that the U.S. had vetoed several proposed Security Council resolutions that did not directly link a ceasefire to the release of Israeli hostages or condemn the Hamas attacks that initiated the conflict. The U.S. eventually allowed a resolution to pass in late March by abstaining.

American officials have contended that the ceasefire and hostage releases should be connected, whereas Russia, China, and many other council members have supported unconditional ceasefire calls.

“This time, the U.S. did not dare to stand in opposition to international morality and chose to abstain. However, the U.S. claimed that this resolution was not binding,” Wang remarked. “In the eyes of the United States, international law seems to be a tool that can be used whenever it finds useful and discarded if it does not want to use it.”

The ministers also discussed the economic ties and strategic issues concerning the South China Sea between their countries.

China stands as Indonesia’s largest trading partner, with bilateral trade exceeding $127 billion. Furthermore, China is one of Indonesia’s top foreign investors, having invested more than $7.4 billion in 2023.

Later on Thursday, Wang is scheduled to meet with Indonesian President Joko Widodo and president-elect Prabowo Subianto, currently the defense minister.

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