Note n°14 de l’Observatoire de la Chine, par Obert Hodzi (post-doctoral researcher, University of Helsinki, Finland)
South Sudan, the newest country in Africa has seemingly become China’s test ground for its foreign policy and security strategies. The complexity of South Sudan’s war of independence and subsequent secession from the Sudan in 2011 tested China’s ability to turn a hostile relationship with the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) into a mutually beneficial one.
The Juba-Khartoum conflict over oil transit fees resulting in oil production shutdown in 2012 challenged Beijing’s conflict mediation strategies and its ability to coordinate the volatile Beijing-Juba-Khartoum triangular relationship.
In addition, before Chinese oil companies recuperated from the oil production disruptions, or fully came to terms with the complexities of working with the two antagonistic Sudans in their interdependent oil sector, a civil war broke out between the South Sudanese government and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – In Opposition (SPLM-IO) led by former vice-president Riek Machar, further challenging China’s foreign policy and security strategies in Africa.
- South Sudan’s strategic significance to China
- Strategy of ‘parallels’
- Principle versus pragmatism
- Bilateralism and multilateralism
- Mediation and Power Politics