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China Hopes to Further Military Ties with New Zealand

The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) hopes to work with the New Zealand armed forces to push forward bilateral friendship and cooperation up to a new, higher height, said Chinese Minister of National Defense Cao Gangchuan in Beijing Wednesday.

Cao, also vice-chairman of the Central Military Commission and state councilor, made the remarks during his meeting with visiting New Zealand's navy commander Major General RAdm D. Ledson.

Cao said that the relations between the two armed forces showed sound growing momentum in recent years along with the smooth development of Sino-New Zealand friendly relations.

The two armed forces kept frequent exchanges and visits and their friendly cooperation progressed smoothly, acknowledged Cao. He expressed the belief that Ledson's present China trip will promote the friendly cooperative ties between the two armed forces, especially their two navies.

Ledson said the exchange of visits between the personnel and fleets of the two armed forces play a very crucial role in the development of bilateral friendly and cooperative relations.

New Zealand armed forces will make active efforts to boost bilateral military ties, Ledson added.

Ledson and his party arrived in Beijing Saturday for an official friendly visit to China.

(Xinhua News Agency November 4, 2004)

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