Chinese FM holds talks with UN

China’s foreign minister discussed Sudan’s troubled Darfur region as well as Kosovo’s future in a telephone conversation Sunday with the head of the United Nations, the Foreign Ministry said.

Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon the international community should continue to emphasize both the political process and the deployment of peacekeepers in its efforts to resolve the Darfur conflict, a statement on the ministry’s Web site said.

Ban expressed his appreciation to China for playing a “constructive role in seeking a solution” to the conflict in Darfur, the statement said.

More than 200,000 people have been killed and 2.2 million forced to flee their homes in nearly four years of fighting between the Sudanese government and ethnic African rebels.

China, which buys two-thirds of Sudan’s oil and sells it weapons and military aircraft, has opposed sanctions against Sudan. However, the Chinese government has urged Sudan to accept the deployment of United Nations-backed international peacekeepers for Darfur.

The statement did not give details on the two officials’ discussions about Kosovo, but the conversation follows a recent decision by the U.N. Security Council, of which China is a permanent member, to send a mission to Kosovo and Serbia this month for a firsthand assessment of the situation before tackling the future status of the Serbian province.

Kosovo’s ethnic Albanian majority has been pressing for independence, but Serbia, which has close cultural ties with Russia, is vehemently opposed. Kosovo has been under U.N. and NATO administration since a 78-day NATO-led air war that halted a Serb crackdown on ethnic Albanian separatists in 1999.
Source: Serbianna

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