Beijing voiced opposition to US-led airstrikes against Syrian military targets early Saturday morning and called for talks.
China also said the operation had complicated the Syrian crisis.
“Any unilateral military action violates the United Nations charter and its principles and international law and its principles. [The strike] is also going to add more factors to complicate the resolution of the Syrian crisis,” Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said in a statement on Saturday afternoon.
Beijing also called for an investigation into the claims of Syrian chemical attacks, which prompted the Western strikes.
“The Chinese side believes a comprehensive, impartial and objective investigation should be conducted into the suspected chemical attacks and it should come up with reliable conclusions that can be reviewed by history. Before this, no conclusion by any side should be made,” Hua said.
Beijing was responding to air strikes by the United States, Britain and France on what the US said were three chemical weapons facilities.
US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said no further strikes were planned, describing the operation as a “one-time shot”.
The Russian military had vowed to respond to any attack, and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s administration had repeatedly warned that US President Donald Trump was taking America down a dangerous path.