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China calls for balanced position on Sudan-South Sudan issue

(Xinhua)

08:13, May 03, 2012

UNITED NATIONS, May 2 (Xinhua) -- China has always maintained that the international community should take an "objective, impartial and balanced" stand in handling the issue concerning Sudan and South Sudan, said Chinese UN Ambassador Li Baodong here Wednesday.

Li made the remarks at a UN Security Council meeting where a resolution on Sudan and South Sudan was unanimously adopted.

"China has all along maintained that the international community should take an objective, impartial and balanced position on Sudan and South Sudan, avoid taking sides or imposing unbalanced pressure on the parties, and refrain from interfering in the mediation efforts of the African Union and other regional organizations and countries," said Li, "We are always very cautious about use or threat of sanctions."

According to the resolution, Sudan and South Sudan shall " immediately cease all hostilities, including aerial bombardments," and both parties formally present their commitments to the chairman of the African Union Commission and the president of the Security Council within 48 hours of the adoption of the resolution.

Since South Sudan's independence from a united Sudan in July last year, the two countries have been locked in disputes over border demarcation in oil-rich regions.

Tensions flared up on April 10 when South Sudan took the Heglig oil field on the border by force. The Sudanese army, however, on April 20 managed to take back Heglig, which includes Sudan's biggest oil fields, after bloody confrontations with South Sudan's army.

Li also said China has maintained that African issues should be settled by Africa in African ways.

"We hope Sudan and South Sudan actively provide their cooperation to the mediation efforts of the African Union and the international community, take practical steps to implement the AU roadmap, and seek early and proper solution of the relevant issues, " he said.

China hopes Sudan and South Sudan "stick to the path of peace, put an immediate end to all hostilities and violence, and fully respect each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, restore peace and stability along their borders as soon as possible". Li said China also hopes that the two African countries " fully implement the existing agreements in good faith, resolve the outstanding issues through dialogue and negotiations and make joint efforts to forge good-neighborly and friendly relations of equality, mutual trust and mutual benefit."

China, for its own part, will continue to play a positive and constructive role in promoting the proper settlement of issues between Sudan and South Sudan, along with the international community, he added.

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