Enter the dragon in Africa’s darkest nations – Fred Bridgland

From Sunday Herald: Alarm bells ring in the West as China’s quest for resources means making deals with some of the world’s worst regimes.

Top representatives of 46 African countries are this weekend returning from the annual China-Africa Co-operation Forum (CACF) in Beijing with fresh promises of Chinese help in developing their nations.

The CACF, which is worrying the European Union and the United States, has become the main mechanism by which China is co-ordinating its expansion into in a large-scale campaign for access to natural resources – especially oil, but also gas, copper, manganese, iron, fish, timber and a host of other primary products that has in abundance.

Alongside new commercial enterprises, China has been solidifying its strongest and longest partnerships with two oppressive African oligarchies, Zimbabwe and Sudan.

“What is disconcerting is the willingness of China to not only help but to defend rogue regimes,” said Princeton Lyman, a former US ambassador to South Africa and Nigeria .

Testifying in Washington before the US-China Economic and Security Review Committee, Lyman added: “China [with its membership and veto on the Security Council] has in effect inhibited the United Nations from imposing sanctions on Sudan and, in Zimbabwe, is helping to bail out a regime that is repressive and is destroying the country.”

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