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China plays "positive role" on Darfur issue, British Foreign Secretary says

2007-05-17

BEIJING, May 17 (Xinhua) -- British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett Thursday praised China's role on Darfur issue, calling more efforts from the international community.

"I noticed there have been some criticism of China, but actually China has played a really quite positive role, particularly in the negotiation of the Darfur peace agreement," Beckett told a press conference at the Ambassador's residence in Beijing.

Chinese government has always been working actively on the resolution of the Darfur issue by providing humanitarian assistance to the Darfur region, and repeatedly sending special envoys to the region.

China has also designated a special representative on African affairs and decided to dispatch a 275-member multifunctional engineering troop to participate in the implementation of the second phase of the Annan proposal.

The Annan proposal, put forward by then UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, is a three-phase support plan aimed at deploying a combination of African Union and UN peacekeeping force in the Darfur region.

Beckett said China, along with all the rest of the international community, very much regret that peace agreement has not be implemented by the government of Sudan.

Beckett arrived here Wednesday morning for a six-day official visit to China. This is Beckett's first visit to China as British Foreign Secretary.

She is expected to discuss China-Britain relations and other regional and international issues of common concern with senior Chinese leaders on Friday.

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