Hu trip to win over EU on arms ban – Chris Buckley
President Hu Jintao will use a visit to Europe this month to promote that China is a “peacefully developing” power that should not be subject to an arms ban, Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing said.
The European Union had planned this year to remove the ban, imposed after China’s suppression of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, but fierce US and Japanese pressure and Chinese threats of force against Taiwan prompted the EU to think again.
“The weapons ban should have been thrown into the rubbish bin of history long ago,” Li said. He said the ban worked against “mutually beneficial cooperation” but he dismissed the possibility that China would offer concessions on human rights to persuade the EU to lift it. Hu visits Britain, Germany, Spain and South Korea from November 8 to 17 and then attends an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Pusan, South Korea.