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China for push to strategic ties

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ENHANCING RELATIONSHIp: External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in discussion with Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Friday. —
ENHANCING RELATIONSHIp: External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee in discussion with Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Friday. —

BEIJING: India and China on Friday vowed to strengthen their strategic ties. The resolve came at a meeting between External Affairs Pranab Mukherjee and Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping here.

“China will work with India to promote the bilateral strategic partnership of cooperation and contribute to long-lasting peace and prosperity in the world,” Mr. Xi said.

China was satisfied with the development of relations with India. The two countries had cooperated in all areas, deepened mutual understanding and trust and maintained close coordination and cooperation in international and regional affairs, he said.

Mr. Mukherjee said the cooperation between the two countries would not only be conducive to regional peace and prosperity, but also the whole world. He also enquired about the progress of the torch relay of the Beijing Olympic Games and wished the Games a great success.

Mr. Xi thanked India for its support to the torch relay in New Delhi.

Border issue

Speaking at the Peking University, Mr. Mukherjee said India and China should be “patient and realistic” in resolving the boundary dispute.

While underscoring New Delhi’s determination not to allow the differences to be an obstacle in enhancing bilateral ties, he said: “we will have to be patient and realistic.” Both countries were mature enough to realise and address the “difficult issues” in the bilateral relationship.

“We need to resolve these differences through negotiations in a constructive and forward looking manner,” the Minister, who is on a four-day visit to the country, said.

The boundary was peaceful and “we are determined to keep it so,” Mr. Mukherjee said.

Explaining the contours of India’s foreign policy to the faculty and students, he said India guarded its strategic autonomy and stood by the principles of independence and freedom of action in external relations. But this had not prevented it from developing friendships and good relations with all major countries.

“We believe this is the strength of our foreign policy.” — Xinhua, PTI

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