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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China's XI Jinping. (Photo: PTI)
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China's XI Jinping. (Photo: PTI)

India, China mark 70 years of diplomatic ties, seek to boost relationship

  • Modi says good relations between India and China are important for peace, stability and prosperity in their region and the world
  • Pandemic is a reminder of the interconnected nature of our world and hence need for a global response, also says the PM

NEW DELHI : Burying their differences in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, India and China on Wednesday exchanged warm words of greetings and spoke of the partnership between the world’s two most populous nations.

The occasion was the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries, a landmark event.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said good relations between India and China are important for peace, stability and prosperity in their region and the world. In his message to Chinese premier Li Keqiang, Modi also noted that “the covid-19 pandemic was a reminder to us of the interconnected nature of our world today and the need therefore to adopt a truly global response to it."

He said he looked forward to working with the Chinese Premier to “further deepen and strengthen our Closer Developmental Partnership and take it to even greater heights in the years to come".

On April 1, 1950, India became the first non-Communist country in Asia to establish diplomatic ties with China.

Both countries agreed last year to hold 70 events—35 each in India and China—to mark the occasion but the plan had to be put on hold due to the pandemic. The agreement was reached when Modi and President Xi Jinping met for their second informal summit at Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu in October. The aim of the events was to boost people-to-people ties.

In his message to his counterpart, president Xi said India and China had reached a “new starting point" in ties. He added that he placed “great importance" to this partnership and that he was ready to take it to a new level.

“A stronger China-India relationship will bring more benefits to our two countries and peoples and contribute more positive energy to Asia and the world at large," Xi said in his message to president Ramnath Kovind.

Premier Li in his message to Modi said that a “relationship defined by friendship, cooperation and mutual benefit will serve the fundamental interests of both countries. China is ready to join hands with India to build on the momentum created by this 70th anniversary to work for new progress in our strategic and cooperative partnership."

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