Home | News    Tuesday 19 February 2008

FACTBOX: China’s unrelenting support to Sudan on Darfur

July 30, 2004: China abstains from voting on resolution 1556 that demands the disarmament of notorious Janjaweed militias in Darfur and threatens further measures in the event of non-compliance. The Chinese ambassador at the Security Council (UNSC) Zhang Yishan said that the resolution while it incorporated some of the amendments they requested “it still included references to measures that were not helpful and which could further complicate the situation”.

September 18, 2004: China abstains from voting on resolution 1564 calling on UN Secretary General to set up Commission of Inquiry to investigate human rights violations in Darfur. In justifying the vote, the Chinese envoy at the UNSC Wang Guangya, said that “the Sudanese Government had shown sincerity in resolving the problem in Darfur”.

March 29, 2005: China abstains from voting on resolution 1591 which calls for sanctions against those "responsible for committing violence in Darfur or impeding the peace process continues efforts to end impunity and as a down payment towards justice and accountability”. It also imposes an arms embargo on the parties to the Darfur conflict.

March 31, 2005: China abstains from voting on resolution 1593 referring the situation Darfur to International Criminal Court (ICC). Wang Guangya said that his government “would have preferred that the perpetrators stand trial in Sudanese courts, which had recently taken action against people involved in human rights violations in Darfur. China did not favor the referral to the International Criminal Court without the consent of the Sudanese Government”.

April 17, 2006: Reports from the UN say that China along with Russia blocked U.N. sanctions against four Sudanese individuals including a government official. The Chinese ambassador told reporters that now was not the time to impose a travel ban or an assets freeze on Sudanese individuals because of the ongoing peace talks on the escalating Darfur conflict, held in Abuja, Nigeria. The United States threatened to force a public vote on the issue.

April 25, 2006: China abstains from voting on resolution 1672 imposing financial sanctions and travel ban on 4 Sudanese. Ambassador Wang Guangya said that China “did not believe the timing of the vote was right”.

August 31, 2006: China abstains from voting on resolution 1706 expanding the mandate of UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) to include Darfur. Beijing had insisted that the resolution includes a phrase “inviting the consent of Sudanese government”. Despite that Guangya said that the abstention was due to the “the timing of the vote”.

February 02, 2007: Chinese president visits Sudan and signs accords for building new schools, a new presidential palace, reduced import tariffs on some Sudanese goods, granted a loan of 600 million Yuan (US$77.4 million; euro59.5 million) for infrastructure, and gave a grant of a US$40 million (euro30.7 million). China also canceled debts of 470 million Yuan (US$60.7 million; euro46.6 million) and US$19 million (euro14.6million). The economic agreements signed draw international criticism.

May 08, 2007: Amnesty International (AI) issue a report showing photos of Chinese-made military planes at airports in Darfur in violation of resolution 1591.

May 30, 2007: China says it will not support any resolution trying to force Sudan to accept UN peacekeepers in Darfur. Beijing also criticized decision by the US to slap financial sanctions on 31 Sudanese companies and 3 other individuals.

July 31, 2007: After working with other UNSC members on severely weakening the resolution, China votes in favor of resolution 1769 establishing a joint UN-AU “hybrid” force to replace resolution 1706.

August 18, 2007: The Small Arms Survey advocacy group releases a report accusing China of providing Sudan with “financial and military means for Khartoum to engage in its brutal campaign to suppress the Darfur rebellion”.

September 18, 2007: China’s special envoy to Africa Liu Guijin tells reporters that “relations between the Chinese and Sudanese governments are no more special than our relations with other developing nations".

December 5, 2007: China along with Russia and Qatar, block efforts to issue a UNSC presidential statement supporting the arrest of Darfur war crime suspect and their extradition to the International Criminal Court (ICC) pursuant to resolution 1593.

December 7, 2007: China’s special envoy to Africa Liu Guijin says his country is not able to send helicopters to fill out the shortage for the UN-AU hybrid force.

January 30, 2008: The Special envoy of Chinese government Zhai Jun meets with Sudan’s foreign minister Deng Alor in Addis Ababa and affirms his government support to Khartoum in the international arena. However he tells Alor that Sudan should “not to do things that will cause the international community to impose sanctions on them".

(ST)