Africa should not be forgotten, marginalized or victimized when Ukraine crisis hits world: Wang Yi
Published: Mar 20, 2022 10:33 PM
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends a press conference on China's foreign policy and foreign relations via video link on the sidelines of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 7, 2022. Photo: The Paper

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi  Photo: The Paper

When the Ukraine crisis has had a huge impact on the situation in Europe and the impact is spilling over to the whole world, Africa, in particular, should not be forgotten, marginalized or victimized, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi after meeting with Algerian Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra on Sunday. 

"The more turbulent the international situation is, the more attention should be paid to the voices of African countries, and the more support and assistance should be provided to Africa," Wang said at a news conference after his meeting with Lamamra in Tunxi, East China's Anhui Province. 

Wang promised that China will continue to stand with Africa, firmly support Africa to maintain  its peace and security, achieving economic recovery, defending its legitimate rights and interests, and make its due contribution to Africa's independence and sustainable development. 

Regarding the Ukraine crisis, Wang said he felt a lot of common language after he exchanged views with the foreign ministers of several Asian and African countries recently. 

"We generally agreed that there are more than two options, namely war and sanctions, for dealing with international and regional hotspot issues, but dialogue and negotiation is the fundamental solution, which should be adhered to under the current situation," Wang said. 

Wang stressed that the people around the world are not responsible for paying the bill for geo-conflicts and major-country competition, as escalating unilateral sanctions will cause a break in the global supply and industrial chains, hurting the livelihood of people of all countries 

Wang said that all countries have the right to decide their own foreign policies independently and autonomously, and should not be forced to choose sides. We should resist the Cold War mentality and oppose confrontation between camps, he said.

The impact of the Russia-Ukraine conflict on African countries cannot be ignored, He Wenping, director of the African Studies Section at the Institute of West Asian and African Studies under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Sunday.

"The sanctions against Russia have significantly hit the world economy, and that has a big impact on economic recovery in less developed regions of Africa," He said. "Rising oil and gas prices and food shortages have all had an impact on some African countries."

He noted that the crisis in Ukraine has caused other topics to be forgotten, and that the most important thing right now is the peaceful resolution of conflicts. "This is what China has been calling for, and African countries are joining in."

It is also clear from Wang Yi's meeting with African foreign ministers that China will also continue to help Africa in many ways as it is affected by the shock.

China will continue to help Africa fight the coronavirus epidemic and promote economic cooperation like the Belt and Road Initiative to minimize the negative impact of COVID-19 on Africa so Africa can recover economically, He said.

On Saturday, Wang also held talks with Zambian Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Stanley Kasongo Kakubo, the first foreign minister of a sub-Saharan African country to visit China since the pandemic began.

Wang said that China is willing to work with Zambia to strengthen strategic communication, deepen exchanges of governance experience, enhance mutual trust and expand practical cooperation in various fields.

Kakubo appreciated China's active role in promoting peace talks and its long-term leading role in realizing peace.