Russia, China Sign First New Friendship Treaty in Half a Century

Chinese President Jiang Zemin and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Monday signed the first friendship treaty between China and Russia since 1950 at the end of summit talks in the Kremlin.

Jiang and Putin signed a broad Good Neighborly Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation, replacing an outdated 1950 version that failed to prevent a 1969 border war.

The agreement, valid for 20 years according to RIA-Novosti news agency, is not directed against any third state, said a text released to journalists before the signing.

The treaty commits the giant neighbours to "mutual efforts to support global strategic balance and stability.

"Both support cooperation over cornerstone agreements which provide support for strategic stability," it continues in a reference to the key 1972 ABM arms control treaty which bars disputed plans for a US missile shield.

The treaty also underlines that "military and military technical cooperation between the two agreed sides is not being directed against any third state."

( 07/16/2001)

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