China, France resolve to maintain strategic ties (Lead)

April 27th, 2008 - 8:59 pm ICT by admin  

Beijing, April 27 (Xinhua) China and France have agreed to “cherish and maintain” a comprehensive strategic partnership after relations were strained following recent disturbances during the Paris leg of the Olympic torch relay. A five-point consensus was reached between the two countries during talks Chinese State Councillor Dai Bingguo held here with Jean-David Levitte, diplomatic adviser of French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Saturday, a foreign ministry statement said.

China and France should view and handle two-way relations from a strategic level and long-term perspective. The two countries should make efforts to remove obstacles and strengthen mutual trust so as to promote healthy and smooth development of the Sino-French relations, the statement said.

During their talks, France reaffirmed its one-China policy and reiterated its stand that Tibet and Taiwan are China’s internal issues. Paris expressed its support to China’s national reunification.

The two sides also touched upon the Olympic issue, saying that Olympic Games serve as a grand activity of sports and friendship of peoples of the world. The French side supports and wishes a great success to the Beijing Olympic Games, the statement said.

The China-France comprehensive strategic partnership could play a bigger role in safeguarding the peace and stability of the world, the two countries said.

The seventh summit of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) will be held in Beijing in the latter half of this year, when France holds the rotating European Union (EU) presidency and hosts the 11th China-EU Summit.

The two sides vowed to make joint efforts to push forward the China-EU relations.

Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping during his meeting with Levitte Sunday expressed hopes that the two countries would continue to resolve irritants in their bilateral ties and would work to promote a strategic partnership.

“We hope the French side will pay great attention to the current problems in China-France relationship, take concrete actions and work with China to overcome difficulties, enhance friendship and deepen mutual trust, so as to continue to develop a healthy relationship,” Xi said.

He said that a series of events occurred in France recently hurting the Chinese people’s feelings and also damaged the image of France in their minds.

China believed strategic partnership between the two countries is in the interest of both and also conducive to world peace, he said

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