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Cablegate: Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Visits Rwanda

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PP RUEHGI RUEHRN
DE RUEHLGB #0055 0271723
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 271723Z JAN 10
FM AMEMBASSY KIGALI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6610
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
RUZEFAA/HQ USAFRICOM STUTTGART GE
RUEHLMC/MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORP 0162
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0361

UNCLAS KIGALI 000055

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL EAID CH CG RW
SUBJECT: CHINESE VICE FOREIGN MINISTER VISITS RWANDA

1. (SBU) Chinese Vice Foreign Minister for African Affairs
Zhai Jun visited Rwanda January 25-27. During his stay, he
met with President Kagame, Foreign Minister Mushikiwabo,
other senior officials and businessmen. He also visited the
main genocide memorial at Gisozi as well as sites outside of
Kigali (NFI). According to local media, Jun said after his
meeting with Mushikiwabo that China was "ready to work with
other members of the international community to play a
constructive role in promoting long-term stability and
security in the Great Lakes region," and he reportedly
praised improved relations between Rwanda and the Democratic
Republic of the Congo (DRC) as well as Rwanda-DRC cooperation
against armed groups in eastern DRC. (Note: A January 26
Xinhua story on the meeting between Jun and Kagame focused
exclusively on bilateral China-Rwanda relations, and did not
mention broader Great Lakes issues. End Note.)

2. (SBU) Local media also reported that Jun and Mushikiwabo
on January 25 signed agreements on $30 million in soft
loans--financing promised by the Chinese to Rwanda at the
November 2009 China-Africa summit in Egypt--but that the two
governments had not yet decided what specific project(s) to
support.

3. (SBU) The Chinese Embassy told polcouns that Jun planned
to travel to Addis Ababa after leaving Kigali, and that he
would not visit the DRC during his trip.

4. (SBU) Comment: Kagame has been outspoken in his defense
of close ties, especially trade and investment, between China
and African countries. Prime Minister Makuza attended
celebrations for China's October 1 national day, an event the
Foreign Minister would normally attend. The Chinese, for
their part, make periodic high-level visits to Rwanda;
Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi himself visited Rwanda
in January 2009. End Comment.
SYMINGTON

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