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UPDATED: 15:18, November 11, 2004
Hu Jintao expresses condolences over Arafat's death
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Chinese President Hu Jintao Thursday sent a letter of condolences to Rawhi Fattuh, speaker of the Palestine Legislative Council, on the death of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat.

"His passing away was a great loss for Palestinians," Hu said. "The Chinese people has lost a great friend."

Hu hailed Arafat as a great leader and an outstanding politician who had dedicated his whole life to the just cause of regaining the lawful rights of the Palestinian people. Arafat enjoys profound respect among the Palestinian people and great prestige in the international community, Hu added.

Arafat was a founder and proponent of Sino-Palestinian relations and made great contribution to consolidating and developing the friendship between the two nations and two peoples.

Hu expressed the conviction that the Palestinian government and people will carry forward Arafat's uncompleted causes, continue toadvance the peace process in the Middle East, and exert unremitting efforts to resolve the Middle East issue through political means.

China stands ready to work with the Palestinian side to further boost friendly relations, the Chinese president said.

Hu Jintao's special envoy to fly to Cairo to attend Arafat' s funeral
Chinese President Hu Jintao' special envoy, Vice Premier Hui Liangyu, will fly to Cairo, Egypt, Thursday afternoon to attend Yasser Arafat's funeral, said ForeignMinistry spokesperson Zhang Qiyue in Beijing Thursday.

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