China rejects external intervention in the internal affairs of African countries and advocates solving African problems in African way, Xu Jinghu, special representative of the Chinese government on African Affairs, told Xinhua in an interview on Wednesday in Aswan, Egypt.

At the same time, China has always supported and will continue to support peace and development, the major pillars for building nations, in Africa, Xu said.

“Without peace, there is no development,” she told Xinhua on the sidelines of the forum for Sustainable Peace, Security and Development in Africa that kicked off in the upper Egyptian city of Aswan on Wednesday.

The two-day forum focused on post-conflict reconstruction, education, climate change and sustainable development in Africa.

The Chinese envoy said the topics of the forum received positive responses from the leaders and dignitaries of many African countries and international organizations.

“During the panels, African leaders spoke freely and had profound insights, which fully explains the importance and urgency of peace, security and development for African countries,” Xu said.

“The challenges facing African countries have gradually shifted from traditional to non-traditional security issues such as terrorism, weapons smuggling, human trafficking, refugee migration, and displacement,” she said.

Xu underlined “the need for multilateral cooperation” to address the challenges in African countries such as violence and terrorism.

The participants highlighted the importance of tackling security and terrorism issues that drain the resources of the continent, either via regional or international players.

“For supporting African countries to achieve peace and stability, China has always been a sincere and active contributor,” Xu said.

She cited that nearly 2,000 Chinese peacekeepers are deployed in African areas now, adding that the Chinese navy has also escorted commercial ships in the Gulf of Aden and Somalia for more than a decade.

On the relationships between Africa and the international community, Xu said “African countries strongly call for the promotion of democratization and improvement of the international governance system.”

She described the ongoing Libyan crisis as an example of typical result of poor international governance, a main issue that was touched upon during the forum sessions.

“The international community should listen more to the voices from Africa,” she said, adding that China encourages peace, promotes talks and supports the principle of solving the African problems in an African way.

“African countries live and understand their problems and have the right to solve it from their prospective,” Xu said, while highlighting the importance of the non-intervention principle.

China supports the African Union and the African sub-regional organizations “to play a leading role in resolving regional conflicts without external forces’ interference.”