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China urges US to remove obstacles to military ties
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China on Thursday urged the United States to "remove obstacles" to military ties, demanding the United States respect China's core interests so as to create conditions for further military cooperation.

"We hope the US side can treat and deal with military ties between the two countries from strategic and long-term perspectives, and take concrete measures to remove obstacles to push forward the military relationship," said Ge Zhenfeng, deputy chief of the General Staff of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA).

Ge made the remarks in talks with visiting US Chief of Staff of the Army George Casey in the PLA headquarters in Beijing.

Military relations between the two countries gradually improved and developed this year, and China was satisfied with the positive progress, said Ge.

US arms sales to Taiwan had harmed China's core interests and affected the healthy development of bilateral military ties, said Chen Bingde, PLA Chief of the General Staff, who met with Casey later Thursday.

The United States should respect China's core interests and properly handle differences and sensitive issues to create conditions for deepening military cooperation, said Chen.

Casey arrived in Beijing on Wednesday and is scheduled to attend a seminar at the Academy of Military Sciences in Beijing and visit Shenyang Military Area Command in northeastern China.

Casey said he was the first US Chief of Staff of the Army to visit China since 1997.

(Xinhua/(Xinhua News Agency August 20, 2009)

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