India, China join hands to fight terrorism

December 15th, 2008 - 6:45 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Dec 15 (ANI): India and China have decided to work collectively to tackle terrorism during their second Annual Defence Dialogue (ADD) held here today.

Both sides also agreed that international cooperation was vital to defeat terrorism and non-traditional threats sponsored by religious fundamentalism.

Defence Secretary Vijay Singh led the Indian side while Lt. General Ma Xiaotian, Deputy Chief of General Staff; Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) headed the Chinese delegation.

The Chinese leader, who arrived in India on December 10, witnessed the joint India-China Training Exercises in Belgaum on December 11-12, before he winded up his visit later today.

Participating in the daylong deliberations, Lt. General Ma Xiaotian said that India-China relations are no longer a zero-sum relationship and that growing defence cooperation enhanced mutual trust and confidence.

Lt. General Ma condemned terrorism and the recent attacks in Mumbai and conveyed condolences for the victims.

Vijay Singh appreciated Chinas offer of support in this regard. The two joint exercises on counter-terrorism in each others soil have greatly contributed to better understanding, he added.

They agreed that the relationship between the two countries has moved beyond bilateralism and has significance for the stability and growth of the world at large.

The two sides also shared views on global and regional security including piracy off the coast of Somalia.

The Chinese side shared their experience in areas like disaster relief and the successful conduct of the Beijing Olympics mega sports event. Both sides agreed to pursue annual visits, deputing observers to witness exercises and evaluate defence cooperation.

The Annual Defence Dialogue is an important mechanism for holding bilateral talks on defence cooperation between India and China. It is also a forum for exchange of views on regional and security issues between the two countries.

The 1st Annual Defence Dialogue was held in Beijing in November, 2007. (ANI)

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