But in plunging into the civil war in Syria, Russia — despite the fact that most of its Muslim population is Sunni — entangled itself with the Shiite camp, and can no longer be trusted by the Sunnis.
It offers a major mechanism for China to reboot its economy, currently afflicted by slowing growth. The expansion of economic ties has created an imperative for increased diplomatic engagement to protect and expand these relationships.
If a country or a region is not stable, it cannot realise development. There may be some truth to this. China firmly supports regional countries individually exploring China us middle east relations development path that suits their national conditions. With its new anti-terrorism law allowing for the Chinese military to stage counter-terrorism operations abroad — albeit with consent from the relevant country — China can become actively involved in the various coalitions formed to defeat the Islamic State as well as in peacekeeping missions.
The basic building block of Chinese policy remains the development and expansion of economic and trade links. Moscow once enjoyed equally good relations with Tehran and Riyadh.
The Belt and Road initiative is the most ambitious economic development project in human history, to which Beijing has already committed hundreds of billions of dollars. Shiites may be a minority in the Muslim world as a whole, but in the oil-rich Persian Gulf they comprise a majority.
And an inherently atheist Chinese leadership may not even be able to relate to conflicts rooted so deeply in religion. Cultural and educational exchanges are more frequent and people-to-people ties are getting closer with enhanced mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples.
ISIL threats to Suez from Sinai are also viewed in Beijing as a threat to the safety of its trading routes and partners, forcing the subject on to the Chinese policy agenda as a critical element in discussions with Cairo and Riyadhbut also more broadly throughout the region - in Syria and Turkey.
There are several reasons why the Sunni-Shiite divide is of particular concern to China. Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived on January 22, in Iran on the third leg of a Middle East tour aimed at boosting economic ties with the region.
Xi must be seasoned enough to know that Chinese diplomacy, active as it may be, has no chance of overriding centuries of bad blood between Sunnis and Shiites. In the past several weeks, even before the al-Nimr execution, Xi has sought ways for China to inject itself into the Syrian crisis, inviting both Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and the head of the opposition group, the Syrian National Coalition SNCto high-level meetings in Beijing in an effort to promote peaceful resolution.
Traditional Chinese lanterns are installed in the Luxor Temple in preparation for a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, in Luxor, Egypt [AP] China enjoys a standing in the region that none of the stronger and more veteran powers contesting for regional influence has managed. Since becoming president, Xi has visited almost every region of the world — but not the Middle East.
January 26,2: The international footprint of jihadi terror - both as a political and a domestic security issue, is symbolised by the ongoing detention of a Chinese national by Islamists in Syria as well as by the presence of Uighur radicals fighting in Syria and Iraq under the ISIL flag.
China does not side with any party over another and it always seeks the common good. He consults with a variety of public and private institutions dealing with regional political, security, and development issues. Additionally, as one of the few remaining countries still in the business of building nuclear power plants, China can help ensure that Sunni countries developing civilian nuclear power — an undesirable yet unavoidable response to the Iranian nuclear deal — do so with the safeguards necessary for nuclear non-proliferation.
China had already called off a similar trip scheduled for springafter a Saudi-led coalition of Sunni states launched a military campaign in Yemen against the Houthis, an Iran-backed Shiite group.
But China can help keep the flames under control. Cynics may say that these are all tactical moves designed to secure prime business opportunities for China on both sides.
But postponing the visit for a second time in less than a year would have had consequences too.China must prepare to strike back against Donald Trump’s reckless “tantrums”, a Communist party controlled tabloid has warned, as a series of snubs to Beijing from the US president-elect continued to generate diplomatic aftershocks.
The China-UAE relationship is a reflection of orders in transition, at both the regional level in the Middle East and the international level as China’s BRI gives Beijing greater clout in.
Editor’s Note: In testimony before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, Erica Downs discusses China’s energy trade with and investment in the Middle East, and the implications of the resurgence of oil and natural gas production in the United States for China’s role in the Middle East.
Friendly relations with Russia have been an important advantage for China, offsetting its often uneasy relations with the United States. Relations with Europe, both Eastern and Western, generally have been friendly in the early 21st century, and, indeed, close political and trade relations with the European Union nations have been a major thrust of.
Plus, the PLAN's birthday, China in the Middle East, and the truth about Hong Kong's election plan. Friday China links. China has for several months harbored a suspicion that the United States, entering an election year while drowning in domestic oil and gas supply, is not as interested in the Middle East as it has been for the past half century.Download