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Vol 4 (AAC) No 9

Published 1st July 2011


Castles made of sand

Instability in the Middle East and North Africa has put pressure on China’s non-interference principle, pushing it into more pragmatic territory

Beijing signalled the biggest change in its Africa policy when it decided to accept the National Transitional Council as a negotiating partner in the peace talks between Colonel Moammar el Gadaffi and Libya’s rebel groups. China had been reluctant to give a new rebel group in Africa the time of day, worried that North American or European leaders would adopt a similar stance toward the Dalai Lama, Uyghur separatists in western China or a Taiwanese president – all players in disputes that China considers its internal affairs.

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