Much of what I post on here could be classified as a “Debbie Downer,” so it gives me great pleasure to write about something positive.
A Chinese cargo ship An Yue Jiang has been anchored of the coast of Durban, South Africa since April 14th. It is reported to contain 3 million rounds of ammunition for AK-47s, 1,500 rocket-propelled grenades, and 2,500 mortar rounds. The contents are destined for Zimbabwe.
Hmmm. I wonder why Zimbabwe needs that kind of firepower right now? Anyway, the South African National Conventional Arms Control Committee gave approval for transport of the weapons (another excellent decision by the South African government). It seemed that the arms would be shipped overland. Then some everyday heroes entered the picture in the form of South African dock workers. They are refusing to unload the vessel, and their representative bureau, the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union, said it would be “grossly irresponsible” to allow the cargo through. Additionally, the South African Litigation Centre has filed an application to block the transport of the weapons. How fantastic is that?
Hopefully the litigation efforts will stall the shipment of arms until things stabilize a bit in Zimbabwe. One can hope. As for the Chinese, they claim that the shipment of this cache of weapons is simply one aspect of their “normal trade relations with Zimbabwe.” In fact, their Foreign Minister reminded Reuters news agency that,
China has always had a prudent and responsible attitude towards arms sales.
Hahaha! I love it when foreign ministries have a sense of humor about their work!
*”Tip of the hat” ripped from The Colbert Report