UN Habitat executive director
Anna Tibaijuka (C) receives a statue representing a Chinese drum as
a present from Chinese President Hu Jintao (L) at the UN compound in Nairobi,
Kenya, April 28, 2006. [Reuters/file]
President Hu Jintao will visit Sudan and
South Africa in the near future as part of an eight-nation trip to Africa to
broaden the nation's reach and strengthen ties with the continent.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said Thursday that dates and detailed
arrangements for the trip were still being negotiated, but would be announced
The tour will possibly start at the end of the month. The South African
Foreign Ministry has said the country will receive the president in early
It will be Hu's third trip to the continent, following trips to three African
countries in 2004 and another three in April last year.
Minister Li Zhaoxing has just concluded a seven-nation African tour, mostly
focusing on smaller countries. He returned on January 8.
China's diplomatic drive in Africa culminated last November with Beijing
hosting a China-Africa Summit that drew leaders from more than 40 African
Response to ministry upgrade
Liu yesterday also urged Japan to make further efforts to improve and develop
bilateral ties instead of making trouble.
Liu made the comments in response to Japan's recent upgrading of its defense
agency to defense ministry as well as Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo's
recent talks with his
counterpart Tony Blair in which Abe asserted that the European Union lifting its
arms embargo on China would impact security in Asia.
Liu stressed that adhering to the road of peaceful development by Japan
conforms to the fundamental interests of Japan itself and benefits regional
peace, stability and development.
He noted that Japan's concern over the EU's plan to lift
its arms embargo on Beijing "is none of Japan's business and will not impose any
threat to the country."