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China, US Hold Working Meeting on Military Relations

The Chinese defense ministry and his US counterpart ended a two-day working meeting Friday, discussing China-US military relations and future exchange programs.


Zhang Bangdong, director of the Foreign Affairs Office under the Chinese Ministry of National Defense, and US Deputy Under Secretary of Defense Richard Lawless frankly exchanged views on China-US military relations, covering such issues as exchange programs in 2006 and bilateral negotiation on maritime military security.


China's Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army Xiong Guangkai said Friday when meeting with Lawless that the current Sino-American relations enjoy sound development and the relations between the two armies also grow steadily.


Xiong said US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld paid a successful visit to China in October this year. Chinese and US armed forces have maintained smooth contacts in various fields, including personnel and technology exchanges, security policy consultations and warship visits.


"All these activities have played an active role in strengthening mutual understanding and closing relations between the two sides," said Xiong, noting that China is ready to work with the US side to further expand exchanges and cooperation, in an effort to push forward the relations between the two armed forces.


Noting the Taiwan issue remains the crucial factor affecting China-US relations, Xiong said China hopes the United States will honor its commitment, work with China in opposing and containing "Taiwan independence", won't send wrong signals to Taiwan in a bid to safeguard peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits, which accords with the common interests of both China and the United States.


Lawless said the United States would like to make a concerted effort with China to further expand the exchange fields and push forward relations between the US and Chinese armies.


(Xinhua News Agency December 10, 2005)


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