Sino-Indian friendship can change the ‘look of Asia’

November 14th, 2007 - 2:56 am ICT by admin  
With leaders on both sides appreciating the steadily growing bilateral ties, Hu said that the CPC and the Chinese government have always tried to develop ties with India from a strategic and global point of view.

Gandhi, too, said she would like to see more active party-to-party exchanges.

Gandhi is the first leader of a foreign political party to meet Hu and Wen since the conclusion of the 17th CPC National Congress on October 21.

Sonia Gandhi’s visit shows the great importance the two sides attach to the development of bilateral ties, Hu said.

Her five-day visit to China comes just before Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s impending visit later this year.

Sonia said she treasured the rare honour bestowed on her, and was impressed by the achievements of the Chinese people as great changes had taken place since her last visit.

Prime Minister Wen Jiabao recalled his meeting with Sonia Gandhi when she accompanied her husband to China in December 1988.

At that time, he said, the late leader Deng Xiaoping told Sonia’s husband and former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi that without the development of China and India, the next century could not be called “the century of Asia”.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, Sonia visited China’s elite Qinghua University and interacted with students there.

In her speech, according to The China Daily, she stressed on the necessity of India and China having an open dialogue and of how much they could gain through cooperation.

“Our two countries together account for forty percent of the world’s population, the world is big enough to accommodate the growth and aspiration of both our countries. We can, and must, work and prosper together,” said Gandhi.

Her visit follows on the heels of meetings between India, Russia and China’s foreign ministers in northern China to discuss regional issues.

“There is peace and tranquillity on our long border and outstanding issues relating to the boundary in question are being discussed in a comprehensive manner by special representatives of our prime ministers,” said Gandhi.

Decades of mistrust between the neighbours date back to 1962 when the border issue first arose.

Qinghua University students welcomed Gandhi’s visit, saying that she is a epoch-making figure.

Gandhi will also visit China’s ancient capital of Xi’an and its economic hub Shanghai. (ANI)

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