17 December 2012

Sudan: China Puts Forward 'Practical' Proposals to Resolve Sudans' Outstanding Issues

China has presented proposals it described as "practical" to resolve outstanding issues between Sudan and South Sudan, a newspaper's report said on Monday.

Li Changchun (SUNA)

According to the report of the daily Sudanese Arabic newspaper, Al-Sudani, the member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party's Central Committee, Li Changchun, who is visiting Sudan these days, said that his delegation had put forward "practical" proposals to both Sudanese and South Sudanese officials on how to break the deadlock facing their current talks about border security in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa and resume exporting South Sudanese oil via Sudan.

Al-Sudani said that Li Changchun declined to divulge more details on the proposals but said that he had discussed them with South Sudanese officials prior to his arrival in Khartoum.

The Chinese official said that the proposals aim to accelerate the process of resuming South Sudan's oil exports through Sudanese territories. He said that they already visited Juba and exchanged views with South Sudanese officials on the issue of resuming oil exports.

South Sudan postponed plans to resume oil exports through Sudan in November citing "impossible" demands by Khartoum in parallel talks about implementing a border security deal they signed in September. Khartoum says it wants Juba to sever ties with the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) which is fighting the Sudanese government in the border regions of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

Sudan says it will not allow South Sudan's oil to flow through its territories again unless Juba disengage from the SPLM-N which fought as part of South Sudan's army before independence.

China is the biggest investor in the oil sector in both countries and has been walking a fine diplomatic line trying not to appear bias in favor of any side.

In Khartoum, Li Changchun and his delegations held meetings with top state officials including President Omer Al-Bashir and officials from the ruling National Congress Party (NCP).

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