Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of the Johannesburg Summit for the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg Friday Dec. 4, 2015. (AP Photo)
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Chinese President Xi Jinping told African leaders Friday his country would pump $60 billion into development projects, cancel some debt and boost agriculture under a three-year plan that will extend Beijing's influence in the continent.Xi also said China would not interfere in African countries' internal affairs, a stance that drew strong applause from leaders such as Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe who have faced strong Western criticism of their human rights record.But China too has irked some Africans in the past for using Chinese firms and labor to build state-funded roads and railways in Africa while buying up commodities and leaving little for local economies, an image Xi is keen to change during a two-day conference in South Africa that ends Saturday.A country which never was our colonizer ... He is doing to us what we expected those who colonized us yesterday to do," said Mugabe, who is also chairman of the African Union, to loud applause by the delegates.In his speech, Xi said China would cancel existing debts with zero interest loans for least developed countries that mature by the end of 2015 .
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