News / Asia

Israeli, Palestinian Leaders Visit China Separately

Israeli, Palestinian Leaders Visit China Separatelyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Shannon Van Sant
May 08, 2013 4:57 PM
China separately hosted both Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this week, as Beijing appears interested in playing a bigger role as a mediator in the Arab-Israeli conflict. Shannon Van Sant reports from Beijing.
Shannon Van Sant
China separately hosted both Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this week, as Beijing appears interested in  playing a bigger role as a mediator in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
 
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was welcomed in Beijing Wednesday.  He is the first Israeli leader to visit China since 2007.
 
Netanyahu’s trip comes the same week Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas visited Beijing, where President Xi Jinping presented a four-point peace plan.
 
China has historically backed Palestinian positions and only formally established diplomatic ties with Israel in 1992.  But Xiaohe Cheng, a professor of International Relations at Renmin University, said Beijing is seeking to play the role of mediator in the Middle East.   
 
“Certainly China wants to play a larger role, but China has no desire to replace the United States as principal mediator in the peace-making process in the Middle East,” Xiaohe said.
 
There are still key political differences between China and Israel on issues such as Syria.  Beijing opposes outside military intervention, but Israel is suspected of carrying out air strikes in Syria in recent days.
 
When asked about the strikes this week, China’s foreign ministry declined to mention Israel by name.
 
"We hope all sides in Syria will respect Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity, remain restrained and calm, avoiding the use of military force and acts that might raise tension," said Hua Chunying, spokesperson for the ministry of foreign affairs.

Professor Xiaohe said this week’s meetings will focus on areas of cooperation between China and Israel, such as boosting economic ties.
 
“Netanyahu’s visit to China is aimed at strengthening ties between the two countries, and at the same time, you see that Israel has been the principal providers of high-tech know-how to China, and I think the two countries can continue to cooperate in technology cooperation areas,” he said.
 
Although President Abbas and Prime Minister Netanyahu did not meet each other while in China this week, Beijing has an economic interest in brokering peace and stability in the region.
 
Trade between China and Israel has grown to $8 billion annually from $50 million just two decades ago, and China is now the largest importer of Middle East oil in the world.

You May Like

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?i
X
Henry Ridgwell
August 29, 2014 12:26 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid