Xi to visit US, Ireland, Turkey

Updated: 2012-02-07 23:09


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BEIJING - Vice-President Xi Jinping is scheduled to pay official visits to the United States, Ireland and Turkey from February 13 to 22, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said Tuesday.

Xi is visiting the three nations at the invitation of US Vice-President Joe Biden, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny and Turkish President Abdullah Gul, spokesman Liu Weimin said at a news briefing.

Xi's US visit is aimed at further implementing an important consensus reached by state leaders of the two countries to establish a China-US cooperative partnership of mutual respect and reciprocity, Liu said.

He added that China hopes the visit will enhance the two sides' strategic mutual trust, expand bilateral cooperation, and aid in the maintenance of the sound and stable development of China-US ties.

According to the spokesman, Xi will visit Washington, Los Angeles and the state of Iowa.

"The two sides are busy coordinating and preparing a schedule for the visit. We hope to work with the US side to make the visit a success," Liu said.

"China and the United States are committed to the development of strong bilateral ties and maintaining communication with each other in terms of bilateral ties as well as international and regional issues of common concern," said the spokesman.

Liu said that Xi will hold talks with President Gul and meet with some other Turkish leaders and also attend a China-Turkey economic forum there.

China and Turkey have witnessed smooth development of their bilateral ties over the past years, which has yielded fruitful results and brought substantial benefits for the two peoples, said the spokesman.

"China is willing to work together with Turkey to lead the China-Turkey strategic partnership into a new phase," Liu said.

According to the spokesman, during Xi's visit to Ireland, he is scheduled to hold talks with Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny and meet with other Irish leaders, including President Michael Higgins, Speaker Sean Barrett of Ireland's Dail Eireann, the lower house of the Irish Parliament, and Chairman Paddy Burke of Seanad Eireann, the upper house of the Parliament.

Xi will have an in-depth exchange of views with the Irish leaders on China-Ireland and China-Europe relations as well as other topics of common concern, Liu said.

"China and Ireland enjoy traditional friendship," Liu said, adding that the two nations have seen growing high-level interactions, cooperation in various areas and mutual understanding and friendship.

With the increasing challenges in the world, the development of the China-Ireland ties serve not only the two nations and the two peoples, but also the relationship between China and Europe as a whole.

"We hope that, through the visit, the two nations will deepen their friendship and enhance their pragmatic cooperation to step up bilateral ties and advance China-Europe ties in a sustainable way," said the spokesman.