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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei's Regular Press Conference on May 13, 2013


Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei held a press conference on May 13, 2013.

Hong Lei started the press conference with the following announcement:

At the invitation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of the Republic of India, the government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, President Ueli Maurer of the Swiss Confederation and Chancellor Angela Merkel of the Federal Republic of Germany, Premier Li Keqiang of the State Council will pay official visits to the above four countries from May 19 to 27.

Q: Vice President Li Yuanchao recently paid an official visit to Argentina. Please brief us on that.

A: During his visit to Argentina, Vice President Li Yuanchao met with Argentine President Cristina Fernandez De Kirchner and President of the Chamber of Deputies Julian Dominguez and held talks with Vice President and Speaker of the Senate Amado Boudou. Vice President Li Yuanchao said that China-Argentina strategic partnership has made remarkable progress over recent years. The visit is to send an important message to the Argentine side that the new Chinese leadership attaches great importance to China-Argentina relations. It is hoped that this visit will push forward bilateral relations in an all-around way and maintain the sound momentum of bilateral cooperation.

Vice President Li Yuanchao pointed out that China and Argentina should step up all-dimensional exchanges to deepen political mutual trust, enhance cooperation for common development, strengthen multilateral coordination to safeguard common interests and vitalize people-to-people and cultural exchanges to improve traditional friendship.

Vice President Li Yuanchao also said that Latin America and Caribbean are important emerging areas in the world. China and Latin America have firmly followed the mainstream of common development and brought cooperation in all fields from strength to strength over the years. The two sides have kept in touch on establishing the China-Latin America Cooperation Forum to promote overall cooperation. China is willing to enhance communication and coordination with the Argentine side on that and hopes that Argentina would continue to play an active role.

Argentine leaders said that they place high importance on Argentina-China strategic partnership and hope to establish and improve bilateral high-level dialogue mechanism and step up cooperation in investment, trade, agriculture, food, infrastructure and other fields so as to realize a win-win outcome and deliver benefits to the two peoples.

Q: Indian Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid concluded his visit to China last week. What is China's comment on the outcomes of the visit?

A: During Foreign Minister Khurshid's visit, Premier Li Keqiang and State Councilor Yang Jiechi met with him respectively. Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks with him.

China pointed out that China and India are natural strategic partners since both are major developing countries who enjoy time-honored history and civilization and uphold the independent foreign policy of peace. China-India strategic partnership is blessed with enormous potential and broad space for development and has taken on increasing global significance.

Both China and India underlined the importance of maintaining the sound momentum of bilateral relations, enhancing political mutual trust, promoting economic cooperation, increasing cultural interflow, and further strengthening coordination and cooperation in multilateral organizations, such as the UN and the BRICS, so as to take bilateral relations to a new and higher level.

Q: Twin car bombs caused huge casualties in Turkey's southeastern Hatay province on May 11. Turkey has arrested nine Turkish suspects, and relevant investigation is still underway. What is China's comment?

A: China opposes all violent attacks against civilians and condemns the attack in Turkey's Hatay province on May 11. We express sincere sympathy to the Turkish government, people, bereaved families and the injured and lament the death of the victims.

Q: Please brief us on Premier Li Keqiang's itinerary in Pakistan.

A: During Premier Li Keqiang's visit to Pakistan, he will hold talks and meet with Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and other leaders for an in-depth exchange of views on bilateral relations as well as issues of common interest. Premier Li Keqiang will give a speech on China-Pakistan relations and have extensive interactions with Pakistani friends of all circles. We believe that this visit will deepen bilateral comprehensive strategic cooperation and boost China-Pakistan relations.

Q: Please brief us on Premier Li Keqiang's itinerary in India.

A: During Premier Li Keqiang's visit to India, he will hold talks with Indian Prime Minister Singh and meet with other Indian leaders. They will have an in-depth exchange of views on China-India relations, and in particular, the development of China-India all-dimensional cooperation in the new era. Premier Li Keqiang's visit will take China-India strategic cooperative partnership for peace and prosperity to a new and higher level.

Q:Former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif declared victory of his Pakistan Muslim League-N party in the general election. What is China's comment on the result of the election? What is China's expectation of the future development of China-Pakistan relations?

A: China is glad to see that the general election in Pakistan was smooth and stable on the whole. The preliminary results show that the Pakistan Muslim League-N party has done well. China welcomes the results and congratulates the party. As an all-weather friend of Pakistan, China will continue to support Pakistan's efforts to maintain stability and achieve development. We stand ready to make joint efforts with the Pakistani side to take China-Pakistan strategic cooperative partnership to a new and higher level.

Q: Please brief us on Greek Prime Minister Antonios Samaras's visit to China.

A: At the invitation of Premier Li Keqiang of the State Council, Prime Minister Antonios Samaras of the Republic of Greece will pay an official visit to China and attend the Second Annual Conference of the World Cultural Forum (Taihu, China) from May 15 to 19. During his visit, President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Keqiang and other Chinese leaders will meet and hold talks with him respectively to exchange views on bilateral relations as well as international and regional issues of common interest.

China and Greece are actively committed to developing comprehensive strategic partnership. The two sides have maintained frequent high-level visits and enjoyed strong political mutual trust as well as increasingly close exchanges and cooperation in trade, shipping, culture and other fields. We believe that Prime Minister Samaras's visit will further enhance the mutual understanding between China and Greece, build up friendship between the two peoples, deepen practical cooperation in trade and other fields and push forward bilateral relations.

Q: Indian Foreign Minister said that the confrontation incident in the China-India border area was talked about during his visit to China. Please give us more details on that.

A: Relevant issue was discussed during the meeting between China and India. China pointed out that the proper settlement of relevant incident demonstrates that both China and India are committed to solving the problem through friendly consultation with the overall interests of bilateral relations in mind. The two sides should continue to look for a fair, reasonable and mutually acceptable solution to the border issue. Pending the final settlement, both sides should maintain peace and stability of the border areas.

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