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China willing to take India ties to new high

Anil K Joseph Beijing | June 17, 2003 16:45 IST

Ahead of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's crucial visit, China on Tuesday said it is willing to step up bilateral relations with India to a new high.

"We believe that so long as the two sides adhere to the five principles of peaceful co-existence, enhance trust, expand consensus, strengthen coordination, Sino-Indian relations can go further," Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao told reporters.

"Friendly relations and cooperation between the two countries not only conform with the common interests of the two sides but also to peace and stability in the region and the world at large," he added.

Vajpayee will be the first Indian premier to visit China in nearly a decade.

Asked whether India and China will settle their boundary dispute during Vajpayee's visit to Beijing, Liu noted that with the joint efforts of both sides, the Sino-Indian border is quiet and incident-free in recent times.

Asked whether the prime minister's visit to China will further ease tensions between India and Pakistan, Liu welcomed the recent peace initiatives by both sides and hoped that New Delhi and Islamabad will settle their differences thorough peaceful means.

The spokesman said that apart from Beijing, Vajpayee will also visit Luoyang in Central China's Henan province and
Shanghai, the country's largest city and commercial hub in East China.

PM's China Visit: The Complete Coverage

 


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