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Wen Jiabao Attends and Addresses the Commemoration Ceremony of the 55th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Ties between China and India

On the evening of April 11, 2005, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao of the State Council attended the commemoration ceremony of the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and India held in India. Wen Jiabao and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh together lightened the bronze lamp symbolizing luck and blessings for the commemoration ceremony.

In his address, Premier Wen said that China and India are close neighbors and friendly nations. The exchanges between the two countries are ever lasting and have never stopped for over 2000 years. These are important chapters in the history of human civilization. In recent years, the two peoples sympathize with and help each other cordially in the process of fighting for national independence and people's liberation and have therefore forged profound friendship. Mahatma Gandi once said that China and India are real friends in need. The renowned Indian poet Tagore also said that China and India are old and close brothers. Dwarkanath Kotnis, a famous Indian doctor devoted his young life to the liberation cause of China. His name is popular and respected in China. Wen Jiabao said that the new China is faced with lots of difficulties when it was founded 55 years ago. The Indian government and people handed out their helping hand timely by announcing that India recognized the new China. It is the most precious support to China which the Chinese people will always bear in mind. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties, the leaders of both countries advocated the five principles of peaceful co-existence and the slogan that the Chinese and Indian people are brothers was deeply rooted in people's minds. Being friendly neighbors is the mainstream of China-India relations. In 1996, China and India established the 21st-century-oriented constructive partnership. In 2003, the Chinese Premier and the Indian Prime Minister signed the Declaration on Principles for Relations and Comprehensive Cooperation between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of India, indicating that China-India relationship entered a new stage of compressive cooperation. Last year, China and India commemorated the 50th anniversary of the establishment of five principles of peaceful co-existence, reflecting the cooperation and consensus on major international affairs between China and India. Wen said that China and India are the two biggest developing nations in the world. The development of friendly relations and close cooperation between China and India not only accord with the fundamental interests and common aspirations of the two peoples but also exert great influence to the peace and development in Asia and the world at large.

Wen said that the purpose of his visit to India is to strengthen bilateral friendship and cooperation and plan the development prospects for bilateral relations. During his visit, both sides achieved a series of important results with the concerted efforts of both sides.

Wen said," firstly, Manmohan Singh and I signed the joint statement and declared establishing the strategic partnership for peace and stability between China and India. We have sent out a clear and positive signal to the whole world, that is China and India decide to raise the level of bilateral ties and join hands to look into the future. Secondly, we announced the Five-Year Plan for Comprehensive Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and India, launched the joint feasibility studies on regional trade arrangements between China and India and set up a goal to raise the trade volume between two nations to US$ 20 billion or even more by 2008. Thirdly, we have reached the political guiding principles for resolving the boundary issue between our two nations, laying a foundation for resolving the issue left over from history. We reaffirmed that the normal development of bilateral ties should not be affected before the boundary issue is resolved. "

Wen noted that China will adhere to the road of peaceful development and pursue the foreign policy of "being a good neighbor and partner". Developing friendly cooperation with India is the established policy of China. We are willing to work together with India to promote exchanges, dialogues and cooperation between the two nations and enrich the content of long-term constructive partnership between China and India on the basis of five principles of peaceful co-existence. Wen is convinced that with the joint efforts of both sides the friendly cooperation between the two nations and peoples will shine out resplendent splendors and bear more fruits.

Wen said, "to celebrate the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties Singh and he himself declared jointly that both sides would hold a series of commemoration activities including China-India Cultural Month from now on. The cultural performance tonight drew the curtain of the commemoration activities and served as a prelude for China-India friendship in the new era. In the history of China's cultural relations with foreign nations, the cultural exchanges between China and India that started in Han Dynasty (206 BC-220 AD) is the largest and earliest cultural exchange of China. The Chinese name Fa Xian and Xuan Zang and the Indian name Damo live as long as China-India friendship. Today, I would see that the flower of China-India friendship beyond the times blooms again. China and India are two countries advocating love and union. I wish the cultures of both countries be more brilliant". Singh said in his address that the exchanges between China and India in the flied of science, technology, culture and trade have lasted for several thousand years. The civilizations of both countries are complementary to each other. Today both countries have witnessed the cultural influence to each other. Singh said that India and China needs further cooperation. Today both sides signed the historic joint statement, marking the commencement of this process.

Premier Wen and Prime Minster Singh watched the performance of Chinese Artists together.

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