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UN resolution is 'legal basis' for Kosovo issue
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China stressed on Tuesday that United Nations Resolution 1244 is still the political and legal basis of resolving the issue of Kosovo's status.


"Unless the UN Security Council has other decisions which should be abided by, the UN Security Council's Resolution 1244 is still the political basis and legal foundation of resolving the issue of Kosovo's status," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Liu Jianchao told a regular press conference.


Liu was responding to a question about whether China would participate in the UN mission in Kosovo.


He said since 1999, the international presence in Kosovo, including its combination and tasks, had been authorized and approved by the UN Security Council.


"Before adopting any new resolution by the Security Council, any efforts or acts to resolve the Kosovo issue should accord with relevant regulations of the Resolution 1244," said Liu


He said that China would continue to play an active role in the settlement of the Kosovo issue.


China has expressed grave concern over Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence on Monday.


"Kosovo's unilateral act can produce a series of results that will lead to seriously negative influence on peace and stability in the Balkan region and on the realization of building a multi-ethnic society in Kosovo, which China is deeply concerned about," said Liu.


Kosovo's parliament voted on Sunday to adopt a declaration of independence at an extraordinary session on its independence from Serbia.


But Serbian President Boris Tadic said that Serbia would never recognize the independence of Kosovo.


Kosovo was a southern autonomous province within Serbia before the breakup of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Among its population of 2 million, more than 90 percent are ethnic Albanians. Serbs make up about 7 percent.


Kosovo has been under UN administration since mid-1999, after NATO air-strikes drove out Serbian forces from the province.


Special representative for Darfur to visit Britain, Sudan


Liu Guijin, the Chinese government's special representative for Darfur, will pay a visit to Britain from Feb. 21 to 23, and to Sudan from Feb. 24 to 27, Liu announced.


He will pay the above visits at the invitations of Malloch Brown, minister of state for foreign and commonwealth affairs, and the Sundanese Foreign Ministry, Liu said.


He said the Chinese envoy had paid three visits to Darfur and shuttled between the United States, Britain and other countries concerned, making unremitting efforts to resolving the Darfur issue.


The spokesman said the settlement of the Darfur issue has made progress with the efforts of the whole international community including China.


He referred to the signing of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) by the United Nations and the Sudanese government recently, the deployment of hybrid troops, as well as the development of the political process in this region.


Liu noted under the current circumstances, the UN, the African Union (AU) and the Sudanese government should fully play their own roles and be patient about resolving the issue through dialogue and consultation. Arms should not be used easily to avoid the situation from being deteriorated, he added.


Liu said the political process has lagged behind peacekeeping deployment in the Darfur region.


He called on the international community to push forward the political process and continue to persuade the opposing sides in this region to join the political process and reach a peace agreement with Sudan.


He said the international community should help Sudan to improve the humanitarian and security situation to restore the peace and stability of the region as early as possible.


British secretary of state for foreign affairs to visit China


David Miliband, secretary of state for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs of Britain, will pay an official visit to China from Feb. 24 to 29 at the invitation of Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, Liu announced.


(Xinhua News Agency February 20, 2008)

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