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Ukraine welcomes third Confucius Institute
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The third Confucius Institute in Ukraine, co-founded by Anhui University of China and the Kharkiv National University, opened Monday on the latter's campus.

Zhou Li, the Chinese ambassador to Ukraine, said during the opening ceremony that the co-founding of the Confucius Institute revealed the deepening of Sino-Ukrainian cooperation in education.

As a great Chinese philosopher and educator, Confucius' theories were profoundly influential, said Zhou. The establishment of the institute has provided a new platform for Sino-Ukrainian cultural exchange, and helped enhance the traditional friendship between the peoples of the two countries, he added.

The Kharkiv National University rector, Vil S. Bakirov, said Confucius symbolized Chinese culture, wisdom and knowledge. With China's power and influence increasing on the global stage, there is an increasing desire among Ukrainians to know the Asian country better.

Kharkiv National University, along with Anhui University, would endeavor to provide talents for the reinforcement of Sino-Ukrainian ties, said Bakirov.

Over 700 Chinese students are currently studying at the renowned Ukrainian university, founded in 1804.

The first Confucius Institute in Ukraine was established in the eastern city of Luhansk in 2007, and the second one in Kiev last month.

The Chinese government began to push forward the establishment of non-profit Confucius Institutes overseas in 2004. More than 200 Confucius Institutes have been founded since.

(Xinhua News Agency December 16, 2008)

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