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Friday, October 7, 2022

US strategy for Africa just a stunt to smear China, says Chinese embassy

Pretoria – The Chinese embassy in South Africa said the US Strategy for sub-Saharan Africa, which is meant to improve America-Africa relations and grow Africa’s economy, is actually not about Africa, but a public stunt to smear China.

The Chinese embassy released a statement on Wednesday after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken was in the country.

Blinken said during his visit that China sees the African region as an arena to challenge the rules-based international order, advance its own narrow commercial and geopolitical interests, undermine transparency and openness, and weaken US relations with African peoples and governments.

“For some time, some senior US officials have been taking every opportunity to attack China. Their strategy towards Africa is not about Africa, but a public stunt to smear China.

“China and Africa enjoy a long history of friendship. The two sides have supported each other and forged a profound friendship in the struggle for national liberation and independence,” the embassy said in a statement.

The embassy added that China has a policy toward Africa which is guided by sincerity, real results, affinity and good faith as well as the right approach to justice and shared interests and has actively carried out friendly and mutually beneficial co-operation with Africa.

“In contrast, the US has a deplorable record of racialism and widespread systematic and institutional discrimination against African-Americans. It has never really respected and valued Africa for its own sake.

“Instead, the US has grossly interfered in the internal affairs of African countries, fought ‘proxy wars’ in Africa during the Cold War, and is still meddling in general elections in Africa today,” read the statement.

The statement further added that the US has frequently imposed unilateral sanctions on some African countries, and has kept long-term comprehensive sanctions on Zimbabwe.

“Turning a blind eye to the urgent need of African countries to develop their economies and improve their people’s lives, the US has instead used its policies such as the African Growth and Opportunity Act as a tool to bully African countries.”

According to the US policy document, the strategy will increase its focus on the rule of law, justice, and dignity to deepen resilience and undercut negative influences, as supporting independent judiciaries serves as a bulwark against democratic backsliding, including constraining leaders who attempt to embezzle funds, change constitutions illegally, or steal elections.

The US looks to assist African countries to more transparently leverage their natural resources, including energy resources and critical minerals, for sustainable development while helping to strengthen supply chains that are diverse, open and predictable.

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