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Military

China urges EU to lift arms embargo at early date: FM

PLA Daily 2004-02-13

BEIJING, Feb. 12 (Xinhuanet) -- China hopes the European Union (EU) will lift its arms embargo against China at an early date, said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue here Thursday.

"China hopes the EU will proceed from the overall development of China-EU relations" when making a decision on lifting the arms embargo, Zhang told a press conference.

EU foreign and security policy chief Javier Solana said on Feb.11 that the discussions on lifting the arms embargo against China within the EU are "on the right track," but he could not tell the "exact date" for the lifting at present.

China appreciates Solana's remarks, Zhang said, adding that China has stated time and again its stance on the issue.

The arms embargo "is an obsolete regulation and byproduct of the Cold War," the spokeswoman said.

China hopes all EU member states handle seriously the issue and lift the embargo at an early date, she said.

On Jan. 26, the EU foreign ministers' meeting discussed the issue of lifting the arms ban on China, and the ministers demanded the working groups under the EU Council examine the issue and then report to the ministers.



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