Khartoum, Beijing to hold talks
27 February 2012, 08:12
China - Sudan's foreign minister is to make a two-day visit to
Beijing, China said on Friday, as it seeks to resolve a crisis in
relations between Khartoum and South Sudan, a major oil supplier.
Sudan split from the north last year, but while it has most of the oil,
Khartoum controls the pipeline and has access to the sea, sparking a
furious argument and fears of renewed conflict.
Last month, Juba
vowed to halt oil production of about 350 000 barrels per day until
Sudan repaid 2.4 million barrels of southern crude it confiscated from
pipelines running through the north to its Red Sea port.
the common economic life-line of both [Sudan and South Sudan]," Chinese
foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei told a regular briefing in
Beijing as he announced the visit of Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali
"At the moment the positions of the two countries in this
regard are different, but China always encourages them to resolve this
issue through negotiation."
South Sudan said this week it had
expelled the Chinese head of the country's largest oil firm Petrodar on
charges of colluding with Khartoum to "steal" millions of barrels of its
Before the shutdown, China relied on South Sudan for nearly 5% of its oil.
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