Europe still divided on China arms embargo

Europe remains divided on whether to lift an arms embargo clamped on China in 1989 following events on Tiananmen Square, EU foreign ministers said on Saturday.

Brussels: Europe remains divided on whether
to lift an arms embargo clamped on China in 1989 following
events on Tiananmen Square, EU foreign ministers said on Saturday.

"We discussed delivering arms to China but did not
advance at all towards a solution or joint position", French
Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said at the close of two
days of informal talks with his 26 EU counterparts.

"France has long been favourable" to ending the embargo,
he said. "But we need a joint stand."

His Luxembourg counterpart Jean Asselborn said he was
"disappointed" at the division. "We`re not yet ready to do
this, which I sincerely regret."

"We could`ve offered an exchange: we raise the embargo
and you ratify the convention on civil and political rights,"
he added.

A document examined by the ministers that was obtained by
AFP raised the idea of lifting the embargo against conditions,
such as improved ties with Taiwan, an amnesty for arrests
linked to events at Tiananmen, and a calendar for the
ratification of the rights treaty.

PTI

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