China has joined Russia in pressing for a political solution to the Syrian civil war and warning that any military strike by the US could hurt the global economy by increasing uncertainty and oil prices thus damaging global economic growth, SCMP reports.
Chinese officials made the comments at the G20 summit in St Petersburg, where President Xi Jinping was making his debut.
The Chinese deputy finance minister, Zhu Guangyao, told a pre-G20 briefing: “Military action would have a negative impact on the global economy, especially on oil prices – it will cause a hike in the oil price.”
President Obama is pushing for a military strike in Syria, with the Senate foreign relations committee on Wednesday agreeing on a draft resolution backing the use of US military force in Syria. Obama has vowed to seek the approval of Congress before bombing Syria, an approval that he may not receive.
Putin threatened to send a missile shield to Syria if the US launched an attack without the authority of the United Nations, the Guardian reports.
In his most recent statement on the matter, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said:
China is firmly opposed to the use of chemical weapons by any party in Syria. China supports the UN Secretariat in carrying out independent, objective, impartial and professional investigation on the alleged use of chemical weapons in accordance with relevant UN resolutions.
Several Chinese media outlets have attacked Obama for “hijacking” the G20 economic summit to discuss military action in the Middle East. The Global Times writes:
The world economic agenda of growth and employment that was originally meant to be discussed has been disrupted by the US’ upcoming air strikes on Syria… The G20 summit should not invest its energy entirely on Syria. The US military action plan cannot be allowed to control the tempo of the global economy and politics.
[By Sam Canpadee // Image via Netease]