Sudan grateful to China for Darfur help in improving humanitarian conditions, especially water supply

By Li Xiang
China Daily

BEIJING — Sudanese Vice-President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha yesterday thanked China for continually supporting a peaceful resolution to the Darfur issue, saying its efforts to improve the humanitarian situation in the region is helpful to fundamentally resolving the problem.

"China's aid projects in fields such as drinking water supply, electricity and sanitation have helped to promote the local development and are crucial to eventually resolve the Darfur issue as competition for drinking water is one of the root causes of the conflict in the region," Taha said yesterday at a press conference in Beijing.

The resolution to the Darfur issue should be obtained through dialogue and political consultation rather than military confrontation, he said.

Taha noted that Sudan and China need to enhance cooperation with the United Nations and the African Union to ensure delivery of aid materials and to improve the security situation in Darfur.

During his visit to China, Taha also exchanged views with Chinese leaders on deepening agricultural cooperation between the two countries.

"The development of agriculture is a priority for the Sudanese government because it is important to the country's food security," Taha said, adding that Sudan will borrow from China's successful agricultural development.

China will assist Sudan in building an agricultural research center in Al-Qadarif in eastern Sudan. The center is designed to boost food production and help train Sudanese agricultural professionals.

China and Sudan will mark the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties next year.

Taha said it would be an important opportunity to strengthen and expand the strategic partnership between the two countries.

Wang Jiarui, head of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee, met Taha yesterday, and the two agreed to further party-to-party exchanges.

— July 12, 2008