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Chinese President Hu Jintao (R) shakes hands with Djibouti's President Ismail Omar Guelleh in Beijing/XINHUA

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China vows to enhance bilateral cooperation with Djibouti

Chinese President Hu Jintao (R) shakes hands with Djibouti’s President Ismail Omar Guelleh in Beijing/XINHUA

BEIJING, Jul 19 — Chinese President Hu Jintao held talks with his Djibouti counterpart Ismail Omar Guelleh Wednesday, pledging to has closer bilateral relations with the East African country.

In his talks with Guelleh, Hu said Chinese and Djibouti people have fostered a profound friendship despite the long distance and distinct national conditions.

China appreciates the government of Djibouti for the help it provides to Chinese naval fleets which are conducting escorting missions in the Gulf of Aden and the Somali waters, Hu said.

Calling Djibouti “an important partner of China,” Hu said China wants to work with Djibouti to push forward the bilateral relations in the following three aspects:

Firstly, China wants to enhance mutual political trust and for the two countries to continue to support each other on major issues of respective concerns.

China attaches great importance to the active role Djibouti has played on the Somali issue and other regional issues, and is ready to strengthen consultation and coordination with Djibouti on major international and regional issues so as to safeguard the rights of developing countries, Hu said.

Secondly, to expand economic and trade cooperation and establish a bilateral mixed committee on economy and trade.

China encourages enterprises to invest in Djibouti and participate in the infrastructure construction there so to support the economic and social development in the country, Hu said.

Thirdly, to boost cultural and personal exchanges.

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The two sides should make full use of bilateral channels and mechanisms like Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, China-Arab States Cooperation Forum to increase cooperation in areas such as culture, education, health, and personnel training, Hu said.

In response, Guelleh thanked China for its help towards the economic and social development of Djibouti. He said the Djibouti people hope to learn from China’s successful experience of development.

Djibouti welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest in the construction of port, railway and highway as well as in energy development, and expand personnel and merchandise exchange in East Africa, said Guelleh.

He also talked about the situation in the East African region and the efforts Djibouti has made to promote Somali peace process, expressing the hope for China’s understanding and support on this issue.

Guelleh is in China for a visit during which he will also attend the opening ceremony of the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation held in Beijing on Thursday.


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