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Kissinger praises China's achievements
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Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger on Thursday extended his warm congratulations to the People's Republic of China on its 60th founding anniversary, which falls on Oct. 1, and praised New China's achievements as "extraordinary".

Speaking at a grand reception sponsored by the Chinese Consulate-general in New York, Kissinger told some 400 Chinese and American guests: "When I first visited China in the 1970s, I could not have imagined that China would have developed as it has."

It was through the "vision, dedication and patriotism" of the Chinese people that such tremendous achievements could have been achieved, he added.

The veteran diplomat said that his views were shared by his son as well: "My son had been in China with me in 1974 ... When he saw China now and compared it with what he saw in 1974, he understood the stunning achievements."

Speaking of the US-China relations, Kissinger noted that four generations of Chinese leaders and eight US presidents he knew had all attached great importance to the relations between the two countries.

"One can say there is extraordinary continuity in this relationship," he said.

Kissinger paid a highly confidential visit to China in 1971 that paved the way for a groundbreaking 1972 summit in Beijing between then US President Richard Nixon and China's Chairman Mao Zedong. The visits eventually led to the normalization of the US-China relations on Jan. 1, 1979.

(Xinhua News Agency September 18, 2009)

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