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FM: Premier Wen to attend SCO meeting
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Premier Wen Jiabao will attend the sixth Meeting of Prime Ministers of the Member States of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to be held in Uzbekistan's capital of Tashkent from November 2 to 6, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Liu Jianchao said at a regular press conference on Thursday.


Wen was invited by Uzbekistani Prime Minister Shavkat Mirziyaev, Turkmenistani President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko and Russian Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov, Liu said.


During the five-day tour, Wen will also pay official visits to Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Belarus and Russia. In addition he will attend the 12th regular meeting between the prime ministers of China and Russia, and the closing ceremony of the "Year of China" in Russia.


Wen and state leaders of the countries mentioned above will exchange ideas on promoting bilateral relations, deepening regional cooperation for mutual benefit, and on international and regional issues of common concern, Liu said.


Wen and other leaders of the SCO member states will confer about the implementation of The Treaty on Long-term Good-neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation, the consensus reached at the summit held in Bishkek, capital of Kyrgyzstan this August, and realization of economic and cultural cooperation, according to Liu.


A series of cooperation documents will be signed during Wen's tour, Liu added.


The SCO, a regional organization founded in June 2001, now comprises China, Russia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, with Pakistan, Mongolia, Iran and India holding observer status.


Launch of first lunar probe


The successful launch of China's first lunar probe marks a great effort toward space exploration in the international community, Liu said.


Liu said that the outer space is the common wealth of mankind and should be utilized entirely for peace purposes and benefit mankind.


"We believe that with the cooperation and efforts of the international community, mankind can have a clearer and better understanding of the outer space," said Liu.


China launched its first lunar probe Chang'e-1 on Wednesday, the first step of its ambitious three-stage moon mission, marking a new milestone in the country's history of space exploration.


Oil workers in Sudan safe


Liu said Chinese oil workers in Sudan are safe in response to reports that terrorists had attacked a China-related oil field in Sudan.


Liu said the conflict between the north and south has involved the Chinese oil companies and workers. The Chinese government is gravely concerned about the situation there.


"We hope relevant sides could ceasefire immediately and solve the Darfur issue as soon as possible through peaceful negotiations." Liu said.


China hopes the Sudanese government could attach importance to the concern of China, and take effective measures to ensure the safety of the Chinese workers, Liu added.


Deal on selling fighter jets denied


China denied a Russian report that it will sell fighter jets to Iran, saying no talks were conducted between China and Iran.


"The report is false and irresponsible," Liu said. "We hope the Russian newspaper could clarify its report," he added.


Indian Congress Party President's visit


Liu said Indian Congress Party President Sonia Gandhi is in China for a five-day visit at the invitation of the Communist Party of China, during which she will meet with CPC and China's state leaders.


"We attach great importance to President Gandhi's China visit, which will further promote the relations between the two parties, enhance the understanding between the two peoples and advance friendly cooperation between the two countries," said Liu.


Besides Beijing, Gandhi will visit Xi'an, capital of northwestern Shaanxi Province, and Shanghai, China's economic hub.


Singapore FM to visit


Foreign Minister of Singapore George Yeo Yong Boon will pay an official visit to China on Friday in order to discuss bilateral relations and possibly on the Myanmar issue, Liu said.


Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi will hold talks with his Singaporean counterpart.


"We hope the two sides can reach some consensus on the Myanmar issue and jointly play a constructive role in easing in Myanmar, we want to support reconciliation and stability in Myanmar," Liu said.


Israeli vice PM to visit


Israeli Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Tzipi Livni will pay an official visit to China from October 28 to 30 at the invitation of Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi.


(Xinhua News Agency October 26, 2007)

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