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Sudan, China ink deals on agricultural cooperation
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Visiting Sudanese Vice President Ali Osman Taha on Wednesday hailed new deals with China on agricultural cooperation.

"What has come out of my China visit is a series of economic agreements, particularly the agriculture deal," Taha told a press conference before leaving Wednesday night.

Agricultural cooperation was high on Taha's agenda, as Sudan has given priority to agriculture in its new development strategy.

Under the deal, China will help Sudan build a pilot agricultural center and send experts to train Sudanese people in agricultural skills.

"Sudan would like to seek a strategic agricultural cooperation agreement with China," Taha said.

Taha's trip came after high-level visits by Chinese President Hu Jintao to Sudan and by Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir and First Vice President Salva Kiir to China last year.

During his three-day stay here, Taha met with Hu and held talks with Vice President Xi Jinping.

Taha also discussed with Chinese leaders the implementation of signed bilateral agreements, and he expressed appreciation for China's support on the construction of bridges, highways and irrigation systems.

On the Darfur issue, Taha thanked China for unremitting efforts to resolve the Darfur conflict, particularly its provision of humanitarian support to the Darfur region.

He criticized some foreign countries' attempts to sway the divisive forces in Sudan. "These countries intend to make the Darfur issue -- an internal issue of Sudan -- an international one," Taha said. "Their attempts infringe Sudan's sovereignty."

Taha also lauded Sudan-China diplomatic ties, which reach their 50th anniversary next year, as a "paradigm" of bilateral relations.

(Xinhua News Agency June 12, 2008)

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