China, U.S. defense chiefs reach consensus on developing military ties

WASHINGTON, May 7 (Xinhua) -- China and the United States have reached consensuses on further developing military ties and strengthening pragmatic communication and cooperation between the two sides.

The consensuses were reached during a meeting between visiting Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie and his U.S. counterpart Leon Panetta on Monday afternoon.

During the talks, Liang said his visit aims at implementing the important consensuses reached by Chinese President Hu Jintao and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama on developing the cooperative partnership between the two countries

Liang said the military ties between the two sides have generally been moving forward despite a number of differences such as U.S. arms sale to China's Taiwan, close-in reconnaissance activities by U.S. planes and ships on China and discriminated laws against China.

China and the United States should make efforts to establish a new type of military relationship that stresses equality, mutual benefit,cooperation and win-win, said Liang, adding that such a relationship is not unilaterally dominated, exclusive and zero-sum in nature.

The Chinese defense minister also proposed that the two militaries embrace polices that would promote ties between them, strengthen dialogues and communication and promote mutual trust, deepen pragmatic cooperation and properly handle differences and sensitive issues.

For his part, Panetta said the United States supports to build the two-way military ties which is future oriented.

Panetta hoped that the two sides would step up their cooperation to face security threats and challenges together.

At their meeting, the two defense chiefs reached four consensuses:

Firstly, to make efforts to build the sound, stable and reliable military to military relationship in accordance with President Hu Jintao and President Barack Obama's shared vision for a China-U.S. cooperative partnership based on mutual respect and mutual benefit.

Secondly, continuing to take advantage of the defense consultative talks, the defense policy coordination talks, and the Military Maritime Consultative Agreement and the defense telephone link as important channels to deepen understanding, expand consensus, improve mutual trust and reduce differences.

Panetta would pay a visit to China at the second half of this year at a time convenient for both sides.

Thirdly, to enhance exchanges and cooperation with respect to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, environmental protection, medical, educational, cultural, sports, military archive and other fields.

Fourthly, to conduct joint exercises on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief and counterpiracy this year.

After their meeting, Liang and Panetta attended a joint press conference.


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