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China always prudent in arms trade: FM spokeswoman

    BEIJING, June 13 (Xinhua) -- China always employs a prudent and responsible attitude towards arms exports and the Amnesty International's slams on China's arms trade is irresponsible and groundless, said Jiang Yu, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman here on Tuesday.

    Jiang noted that China adheres to three principles when selling armaments: it should help enhance the self-defense capability of import countries, should not impair regional and global peace, security and stability, and should not be used to interfere with the internal affairs of countries.

    The human rights group released a report on Sunday, accusing China of enabling regional conflict and human right violations by exporting a large quantity of weaponry to Sudan, Nepal, Myanmar and the Great Lakes countries of Africa.

    "China always abides by related international conventions and imposes rigid self-control in terms of arms exports and transfer of military technologies," Jiang said.

    With particular concern over exports of small weapons and conventional weapons, China promulgated the Law on Control of Guns in July 1996, issued regulations on the Administration of Arms Export in October 1997, and started amending the regulations from October 2002.

    According to the regulations, only enterprises granted licenses are allowed to be engaged in the arms trade, and their export items and contracts must go through checkup by related official departments. Weapon producers should offer valid certificates from import countries, including those of end users.

    China has also set up a system to clarify end users of its exported arms, so as to prevent weapons entering political or regionally sensitive and unstable areas, Jiang said.

    Statistics from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute show that from 2000 to 2004, that exports by the United States was estimated at 25.9 billion U.S. dollars. Weaponry exported by China in this period was valued at 1.4 billion U.S. dollars, only 5 percent of that of the United States, the statistics show.

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