China holds position on Syria following U.S. strikes - SupChina

China holds position on Syria following U.S. strikes

The Chinese Foreign Ministry today reiterated China’s support for political, rather than military, solutions for the ongoing civil war in Syria, following a U.S. missile attack on Thursday night on a Syrian government air base. At the ministry’s daily press conference, spokeswoman Hua Chunying 华春莹 notably declined to “criticize or condemn” the U.S. missile strike, which likely caught China off guard.

China has maintained a distanced and somewhat ambiguous position on the Syrian civil war since it began in 2011. The nation has voted with Russia six times at the UN to deny sanctions against the government of Bashar al-Assad, preferring to tout its “principle of non-interference” in internal affairs of foreign countries instead. Nevertheless, China stands out as one country that has maintained both an embassy in Damascus — many have shut down or relocated — and a significant trading relationship with Syria during its civil war.

Lucas Niewenhuis

Lucas Niewenhuis is an associate editor at SupChina who helps curate daily news and produce the company's newsletter, app, and website content. Previously, Lucas researched China-Africa relations at the Social Science Research Council and interned at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. He has studied Chinese language and culture in Shanghai and Beijing, and is a graduate of the University of Michigan.