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Chinese president starts first visit to Senegal
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16:03, February 14, 2009

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Visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao Friday started his first state visit to Senegal aimed at boosting bilateral ties.

Hu held talks with his Senegalese counterpart Abdoulaye Wade to discuss promotion of friendly and cooperative ties between China and the West African nation.

Hu said the bilateral relations have made progress in various fields since the resumption of diplomatic ties in 2005, and facts have proved that the China-Senegal friendship is in the fundamental interests of both nations and will have a promising future.

After the talks, the two presidents witnessed the signing of a number of cooperation deals.

The Chinese president arrived in the Senegalese capital on Friday and was received by Wade at a welcoming ceremony at the airport.

In a statement issued upon his arrival, Hu said both countries enjoy good friendship and the resumption of diplomatic ties helped the development of bilateral cooperation in politics, trade, culture, education and public health among others.

The visit is aimed at deepening mutual understanding and trust, promoting cooperation in various fields and moving bilateral relations to a new high, Hu said.

The Chinese president ended his state visit to Mali and left for Dakar earlier Friday.

Before his departure, Hu and his Malian counterpart Amadou Toumany Toure inaugurated a China-aided bridge construction project in the capital of Bamako.

The bridge, the third one in Bamako, will be constructed by a Chinese company and will play an important role after its completion in the economic development of the western African country.

At the inauguration ceremony, the two leaders spoke highly of the project, saying it is the symbol of friendship and cooperation between the two countries.

Also on Friday Hu met with President of the Malian National Assembly Dioncounda Traore on deepening cooperation and friendship with the country.

Hu said the aim of his visit is to work together with Mali to review the past, look into the future, and to promote bilateral ties.

Hu's five-nation "journey of friendship and cooperation" started in Saudi Arabia. The week-long tour will also take him to Tanzania and Mauritius.


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