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Australia, China to Seek Broader Relations: Australian DM

Australia and China will further develop defense relations and reinforce broader bilateral cooperation though the two sides look at some issues "from different perspectives."

Australian Defense Minister Robert Hill spoke at a press conference held in Beijing Thursday.

The bilateral relations "progressed well" at present, said Hill, adding that Australian Prime Minister John Howard visited China over a month ago and exchanged views with Chinese leaders.

He said the Chinese President will visit Australia "in a couple of weeks' time".

Hill expressed appreciation over China's efforts in the Beijing six-party talks, noting China had played a "unique" role in resolving the Korean nuclear issue peacefully.

Hill supported China's stance on the Korean nuclear issue, including peaceful resolution of the Korean nuclear issue and keeping the Korean peninsular nuclear-free.

Concerning anti-terrorism and prevention of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, Hill said that although the two sides held different views, Australia and China expected "similar" outcomes, hoping to realize the two countries' economic growth and public safety.

Hill hoped that the two countries could enhance cooperation in anti-terrorism and share information. Active cooperation between countries is conductive to reducing terrorist activities, he added.

On Iraq's reconstruction, Hill said both Australia and China supported the United Nations resolution and its function. Hill also expressed expectations that more countries would participate in the reconstruction work so as to realize Iraq's stability at an earlier date.
(Xinhua News Agency September 26, 2003)

China to Strengthen Relations with Australia
Howard: Australia, China Enjoy Strong Relationship
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