'Chindia' walk out of talks

'Chindia' walk out of talks


The crucial climate talks were suspended briefly on Monday after India and China (Chindia) walked out, protesting that the rich countries were making attempts to shirk responsibility in tackling global warming.

The talks, however, resumed after the BASIC bloc—comprising India, Brazil, China and South Africa—got an assurance from the chair that the conference would proceed in a “fully transparent” manner.

“There was concern that the Kyoto Protocol track was not given the importance it deserves,” Union Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said, referring to the pact that asks rich nations to make commitments to cut their carbon emissions beyond 2012.
The talks hit turbulence, with the African countries, supported by the G77 and the BASIC bloc, walked out angered that the conference was weakening in its support for the Kyoto Protocol.

The ministers, participating in the talks, met the president of the 15th Conference of Parties (COP), Connie Hedegaard, seeking an assurance that urgent attention would be given to the Kyoto Protocol, especially to clear emission cut targets for the second commitment period. “The issue has been resolved,” Ramesh said, emerging out of a 45-minute meeting.

The chairs, the G77 and China, who were also present at the meeting, expressed concern that the developed countries were “plotting” to undermine the Kyoto Protocol.

“What we have is a situation where issues pertaining to the Kyoto Protocol were not on the table, and that made the Africa group take a decision that we shall not participate in any negotiations until the issues of the Kyoto Protocol are discussed,” Lumumba Stanislaus Di-Aping, Sudan’s envoy and co-chair of the G-77, said. “We know the developed countries have made the decision that they would want to kill the Kyoto Protocol in order to change the balance of obligations between the developed countries and the developing countries,” he said.

Ramesh said Hedegaard had assured the ministers that the conference would proceed as a normal COP, and that it would be fully transparent. She also said that all ministers would be involved in the informal consultations.

Ramesh said Hedegaard had reassured the BASIC countries that there would be no political declaration, and that work would continue on the Long-term Cooperative Action (LCA) text and the Kyoto Protocol text, which will be negotiated till Thursday morning. “The heads of state will adopt these two texts, and if there are differences then the brackets will remain,” he said. Di-Aping, G77 co-chair, said only issues discussed by the parties would be presented to the heads of state/government.

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