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FM: No Shift in Stance over UN Reform
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The Foreign Ministry yesterday reiterated China's stance on a possible reform of the UN Security Council, saying a consensus is necessary before any resolution is made.


"China opposes pushing forward any reform plan with major disagreements," said ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao.


Japan has been seeking China's support in its bid to get a permanent seat in the Security Council.


In a joint press statement during Premier Wen Jiabao's "ice-thawing" visit to Japan last week, Beijing and Tokyo agreed to enhance dialogue and communication to reach a consensus on a possible reform in the Security Council.


Also, the two sides confirmed the building up of a strategic and mutually beneficial relationship.


China's position on the issue remains unchanged, Liu said. The country supports necessary and rational reform of the Security Council.


China is now the only Asian country in the UN with veto powers.


"It needs extensive, patient and democratic discussions to reach unanimous agreements and find a solution that could be accepted by all," Liu said. At present there are deep differences among all the sides.


Turning to the Darfur issue, Liu said the agreement among Sudan, the African Union (AU) and the UN to allow 3,000 of the world body's troops and equipment in Darfur is a positive move toward peace in the region.


US President George W. Bush, however, threatened on Wednesday to beef up economic sanctions and impose new punishments if Sudan fails to take concrete action to meet its obligations over Darfur crisis.


"It's time to undertake constructive measures to implement the agreement, instead of talking about new sanctions," Liu said.


Liu also announced that Canadian Foreign Minister Peter MacKay will visit from April 29 to May 1 at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart Li Zhaoxing.


(China Daily April 20, 2007)

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