BBC Chinese recently reported that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu both visited Beijing in the same week. However, neither of the two sides nor the new Chinese President Xi Jinping seemed to be ready to start a negotiation with China being the mediator. Meanwhile, Xi Jinping did offer a four-point peace proposal. Although Xi’s proposal does not have anything new or creative, the report expressed the belief that he was somewhat playing a mediator’s role, with caution. When Chinese Premier Li Keqiang met with Netanyahu, he suggested that the sole solution to the Middle East peace and stability issue is conducting dialogues and peace talks. Li also mentioned that China is willing to work with the two sides on the peace-making effort, since China is a common friend of both. China has a US$10 billion annual trade volume with Israel and half of China’s annual oil imports are from the Middle East region.
Source: BBC Chinese, May 9, 2013