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China evacuates its oil workers

Author : | Published: Thursday, July 21, 2016

The China National Petroleum Corporation, CNPC, has announced the evacuation of 191 workers from the oil fields in South Sudan.

The company says it may pull out more workers if the security situation worsens.

A communiqué by the company on Tuesday says it is trying to sustain normal operations in South Sudan by maintaining only 77 Chinese workers in the oil fields in the Upper Nile region.

It however says, should the security situation worsen, it would be forced to pull out all its workers.

China says it is stepping up efforts with other international partners to de-escalate tensions in South Sudan.

Last week, China lost two of its UN peacekeepers in Juba as result of clashes between the SPLA and the SPLA-IO.

Meanwhile, Chinese Special Envoy for African Affairs is touring the region a few days after its National Petroleum Company announced a reduction in its workforce in South Sudan’s oil fields.

Ambassador Zhong Jianhua is visiting Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia to help push for restoration of peace and security in South Sudan.

The Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry website says the Special Envoy wants to discuss with IGAD member countries how to ensure the peace agreement is fully implemented and does not collapse.

It says China is concerned over uncertainties for a permanent ceasefire in South Sudan.

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