“In Africa, China is fighting back against the legacy of colonialism”-Zimo News


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The target of the initiative is Westerners, but there is no name. On September 29, China proposed a resolution condemning “The Legacy of Colonialism” Before the United Nations Human Rights Council, the Council brought together 47 countries. The text adopted on October 8 produced no major consequences and condemned “Economic exploitation, inequality within countries, systemic racism, violations of the rights of indigenous peoples, contemporary forms of slavery and attacks on cultural heritage”. Demonstrated against critics against Beijing’s barbaric colonization of Tibet and the Uyghur minority.

Antoine Kernen, a “China Africa” ​​expert from the University of Lausanne, co-edited the magazine’s “Africa Emerging Countries” archive International critic (No. 89), China knows “Create an image of generosity and power at a low price” On the African continent, its critical discourse on colonialism may be counterproductive.

Where did Beijing’s idea of ​​condemning Western colonial heritage come from?

For China, which has been accused of neocolonialism in Africa and elsewhere, this is clearly a counterattack. Beijing accepted this argument and sent it back to Europeans and Westerners with colonial history. This kind of rhetorical game takes place on the international stage where China is often in a disadvantaged position on human rights issues. This is not bad for her, and she has disputes because she herself has experienced Western colonialism. Especially at the same time, academic circles are increasingly questioning colonial heritage and ethnic issues.

Would she do this twenty years ago?

No, because China was almost non-existent at the international level. Most importantly, she wants to avoid being accused of human rights violations.Big changes come with Xi Jinping [le président chinois]He wanted to show that China does not succumb to the Western world order. Twenty years ago, this country had only foreign economic policies, and today it has a story accompanying it.

Can the information be communicated to African governments?

In West African countries, there are often anti-colonial backgrounds condemning France or the West. Therefore, Africa does not need words like China’s development. Moreover, this kind of discourse is nothing new in China: it can be traced back to the Bandung Conference in 1955 and then the Non-Aligned Movement. Beginning in the 1950s, when China formulated its foreign policy and tried to position itself as the leader of the Third World, it highlighted its past as a colonial power by Western powers. Even today, this story allows him to cultivate differences from them.

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