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EU Strives to Lift Arms Embargo Against China

Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn pledged on Wednesday to make more efforts for early lifting of arms embargo against China.  

Luxembourg, which is to hand over the presidency of the European Union (EU) to Britain, would urge Britain to continue the efforts aiming to strike a deal on the EU code of conduct on arms exports at an EU summit in September, so as to lay down a solid road for the lifting, Asselborn told Xinhua in an exclusive interview.


He said he regretted that Luxembourg could not make the lifting on due time during its presidency.


At the EU summit last December, the EU leaders requested Luxembourg to "finalize" the preparations for them to make a decision during the first half of this year.


Asselborn said after Luxembourg took the EU presidency, it has made various efforts to conclude an agreement on the code of conduct, a key box the EU designs to replace the current embargo.


According to the minister, EU member states have reached consensus on some principled issues, but still some countries have different opinion on a certain articles of the code, thus making the lifting impossible.


Asselborn admitted that the EU is under the pressure from the United States and Japan on the lifting.


The minister spoke highly of the EU-China relations, citing that the EU has become the biggest trading partner of China and China is the second trading partner of the EU.


He believed that the EU and China can find a solution to the lifting of arms embargo.


(Xinhua News Agency June 16, 2005)

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