African Press International (API)

"Daily Online News Channel".

China discloses plans to send military liaison officer to Darfur,

Posted by African Press International on September 18, 2007

Beijing (China) Chinas Special Representative on African Affairs Liu Guijin said on Tuesday in Beijing that China will send a military liaison officer to Sudans Darfur.

China has pledged to send a 315-member multi-functional engineering unit to Darfur in early October, which would be the first batch of UN-AU peacekeepers in place, and China will stick to its commitment, Liu said in a press briefing in Beijing.

He added that China has persuaded Sudan to accept the Kofi Annan plan, also under efforts of the international community, and China has provided aid and help with regard to the reconstruction and development of Darfur.

China has shipped and sent all the batches of humanitarian aid worth 80 million yuan (about US$11 million) to Darfur. A Chinese company has finished a water supply project in south Darfur, which will greatly relieve water shortage there, and another Chinese company has accepted the same task in north Darfur said Liu.

In addition, Liu said some Chinese companies in Sudan were encouraging their workers to contribute money for the reconstruction of Darfur, which could amount to US$2 million, adding that China is also planning to send a medical team to Darfur.

“The U.S. and the UN both hold positive views on Chinas role in resolving the Darfur issue, and hope China will play a bigger role in this regard,” said Liu.

On the process of the Darfur issue, Liu said the biggest problem facing the issue at present is money, as the UN-AU peace keeping mission may need US$2.5 billion, and he hoped this problem would be resolved as soon as possible through the UN.

Liu said the Darfur issue has made some progress on four important aspects, namely the UN-AU hybrid force, political process, humanitarian aid and reconstruction, adding that the political solution to the Darfur issue has proved to be effective and the international community should continue to insist on this road.

Liu then called on all parties to the Darfur issue, including the Sudanese government and Sudans rebel groups, to show restraint for the smooth resolution of the issue.

Liu also criticized reports that “politicized” the China-Sudan relationship, saying the relationship between China and Sudan is no more special than its relations with other African countries and developing nations.

China has promised to send Assistant Foreign Minister Zhai Jun to attend the second high-level consultation on Darfur slated for September 21 in New York, which aims to address Darfurs political process, peace-keeping actions, security and humanitarian situation as well as reconstruction.

Published by Korir, API*APN tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525, source.apa

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