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Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 09:30

More peacekeeping aid set for Africa

By Amy He and Niu Yue at the United Nations
More peacekeeping aid set for Africa

A stable system for international peacekeeping is required and China will increase aid to Africa for such operations, President Xi Jinping told a United Nations peacekeeping summit on the last day of his visit to the United States.

He said that China has taken part in peacekeeping operations for 25 years and has been a top contributor of troops and funds.

To support United Nations operations, China will set up a permanent peacekeeping police squad with 8,000 Chinese troops and will give favorable consideration to UN requests for more Chinese engineering soldiers and medical workers for peacekeeping operations, the president said.

China was joined by eight other countries at the summit.

Xi said that China will also train 2,000 peacekeepers from other countries over the next five years and carry out 10 demining assistance programs that will include training and equipment provisions.

Xi also announced that China will help African countries to improve their peacekeeping efforts and to safeguard stability.

He said it also will provide $100 million in military aid to the African Union over the next five years to support an African standby force as well as build the continent's capacity for immediate crisis response.

Additionally, China will send the first peacekeeping helicopter squad to assist UN peacekeeping operations in Africa, Xi said.

He also emphasized that African countries should use means befitting their own national conditions to solve their special problems.

China's most recent peacekeeping activity in Africa has included sending 700 troops to South Sudan to secure UN bases for civilians who have fled the civil war there.

Herve Ladsous, the head of the UN's peacekeeping operations, praised China's aid to such operations and lauded the country for being the biggest contributor of peacekeepers among the five permanent members of the UN Security Council. The others are the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom and France.

"The latest of course is in South Sudan," where Chinese troops performed well under difficult circumstances, Ladsous told Chinese media before the summit.

Hong Xiao in New York contributed to this story.

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