Xi hopes China, Russia to boost military ties
Updated: 2013-03-24 10:02
MOSCOW - President Xi Jinping on Saturday said he hoped China and Russia to strengthen exchanges and cooperation between the military forces of the two countries.
Xi, also chairman of central military commission, made the remarks while visiting Russia's defense ministry. He is the first Chinese head of state to have made the tour.
A welcome ceremony was held by Russian Defense Minister General Sergei Shoigu when the Chinese president arrived at the ministry. Xi inspected Russia's three-service honor of guards, and the brass band played the two countries' national anthems.
Bilateral military cooperation has a special and important place in the overall China-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination, said Xi, adding that the two armed forces, over the recent years, have seen their exchanges and cooperation constantly enhanced, particularly in the fields of high-level contacts, personnel training, joint exercises, and military technologies.
Xi said though peace, development and cooperation remain the trend of the times, yet as the international situation is undergoing profound changes, the world is still unequal, unbalanced, and tumultuous with challenge of both traditional and non-traditional threats, as well as the further spreading of the turmoil in some areas.
President Xi Jinping (R, Front) inspects the guard of honor together with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (L, Front) during a visit to the Russian Defense Ministry in Moscow, the capital of Russia, March 23, 2013. [Photo/Xinhua]
China and Russia, in the face of complicated and volatile international situation, should strengthen their coordination, and work with the international community to deal with all kinds of challenges and threats, he said.
He also hoped the two militaries to implement the consensus reached by the two heads of state, better plan defense and military exchanges and cooperation, and promote the even greater development of inter-military ties so as to protect the common interests of the two nations, and make contributions to regional peace and stability, and that of the world.
General Sergei Shoigu said presently, extremism and terrorism have re-emerged, and regional and global peace and stability is facing a series of challenges.
Russia and China, friendly neighbors and partners for comprehensive strategic coordination, should boost military-to-military exchanges, and safeguard common security and international strategic balance, the minister said.
After the meeting, Xi also visited the command center of Russia's military force. Big screens at the center showed real-time images of Russia's army, navy and air force, as well as the country's strategic missile troops and special forces, which either were on duty or in the middle of military drills.
President Xi arrived in Moscow on Friday for a state visit to Russia, the first leg of his maiden foreign trip since he took office last week.
Also on Saturday, Xi Jinping met with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Chairman of Russia's State Duma Sergei Naryshkin and Chairwoman of Russia's Federation Council Valentina Matvienko.
The Chinese president on Friday held talks with Russian President Putin, and attended, together with Putin, the opening ceremony of the "Tourism Year of China" in Russia.