Evidence has been uncovered that China has violated a UN arms embargo on Darfur by providing military help to the Sudanese government in the province, the BBC reported yesterday.
The British broadcaster said on its Web site that it had found Chinese army lorries in Darfur with anti-aircraft guns mounted on them.
One of the lorries was in the hands of the rebels, who had captured it from Sudanese troops, the BBC said.
Markings placed the lorries as part of a batch of 212 army lorries the UN suspected had been delivered in 2005 after the arms embargo was put in place.
The broadcaster also said it had been told that China was training pilots to fly Chinese A5 Fantan fighter jets in Darfur.
The UN says up to 300,000 people have been killed and 2.5 million displaced by five years of conflict. The Sudanese government has been accused of using the Janjaweed militia to commit atrocities against Darfur’s population and suppress rebels.
China’s official position is that it respects the embargo. It declined to comment on the BBC’s accusations.
China says it supplies military goods to Sudan only on the condition that the Sudanese government does not use the Chinese-made weapons and vehicles in Darfur.
China has invested heavily in Sudan’s oil industry and says Sudan should be engaged and supported to encourage an end to the Darfur conflict.
Meanwhile, Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir was to chair an emergency Cabinet meeting yesterday over the International Criminal Court’s plans to prosecute Sudanese leaders on charges of war crimes
Fears have been voiced that naming Bashir could trigger a military response from either Sudanese forces or their proxies against UN and African Union peacekeepers and embolden Darfur rebels who attacked Khartoum in May.
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