A Disturbing Trend: China, Sudan, North Korea, and Iran
On Wednesday, July 13, official Chinese news service Xinhua reported that Wang Min, China's deputy representative at the UN, stated on the record that following the peaceful creation of a South Sudanese state, the international community should lift its sanctions on and condemnation of the disgruntled Sudanese leader Omar Hassan al-Bashir and his government. The implementation of a two-state solution as a means of creating the foundation for peace in a previously tumultuous, violent, and genocidal region drew praise for Sudan's leader from around the world; one might assume that asking for better treatment from the international community might be a logical next step. However, when noting China's relationship with other renegade states such as North Korea and Iran over the last few years and decades, other, more disturbing ideas may emerge.
Xinhua reported that Wang Min stated: "The Sudanese government has shown the political will to push the north-south peace process, and has made great efforts in the this regard...[the international community should]...fully normalize relations with Sudan as soon as possible, so the Sudanese people can enjoy peace, dignity and development at the earliest opportunity," (Xinhua).
On the surface, this message can and most likely will be taken by the governments of Sudan and South Sudan as one of congratulations, of hope for the future, and of praise. However, when one examines the political circumstances involving China over the last several years, especially in its relationship with Sudan and other states considered to be rogue, a more sinister thought becomes possible.
With China's official declaration of approval for the actions of the Sudanese government and its open desire for an end to international sanctions imposed on Sudan due to civil rights violations, China is essentially pardoning what many consider to be among the most dangerous of the world's renegade nations. Sudan's president faces charges brought by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity in his role (or lack thereof) in the ongoing genocide in the Darfur region. Indeed, while many people today debate whether Arab leaders such as Bashar al-Assad and Muhammar Gadhafi have earned the legitimacy to rule after committing civil rights violations, China feels that it is comfortable with the leader of the nation in which the 21st century's first genocide was carried out remaining in power.
However, China's lack of motivation in its mission to properly uncover and punish the leaders of known belligerent states does not stop with Sudan. Perhaps the best example would be China's relationship with its neighbor to the East, The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), otherwise known as Kim Jong Il's North Korea. The Council on Foreign Relations reported that "China has supported North Korea ever since Chinese fighters flooded onto the Korean peninsula to fight for their comrades in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in 1950...China has lent political and economic backing to North Korea...In recent years, China has been one of the authoritarian regime's few allies...China refused to take a stance against North Korea, despite evidence that Pyongyang sunk a South Korean naval vessel in March 2010."Continued on the next page