Senior Chinese military official arrives in U.S. for visit

13:39, May 16, 2011      

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China's Chief of the General Staff of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Chen Bingde arrived in Washington later Sunday for a week-long official visit to the United States.

In a written statement issued at the airport, Chen said maintaining a healthy, stable and dependable China-U.S. military-to-military relationship, which is an important part of the overall bilateral ties, will provide a positive push for the China-U.S. relations to develop steadily in a long run.

Chen noted that his U.S. visit, the first in seven years by a PLA chief of the general staff, is part of the efforts to implement the important consensus reached by Chinese President Hu Jintao and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama on developing the relations between the two militaries.

It is aimed at further enhancing mutual understanding, boosting mutual trust, advancing cooperation, and working toward the goal of establishing a new-type military-to-military relationship of mutual respect, cooperation and mutual benefit in the second decade of the 21st century.

In addition to talks with Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Chen will meet with U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Tom Donilon.

Chen will also visit Naval Station Norfolk, Fort Stewart, Nellis Air Force Base and the U.S. Army's National Training Center -- some of which have not been opened to visiting military leaders for years -- as part of the U.S. high-profile reception.

In addition, the senior Chinese military official will deliver a speech on the new-type military-to-military relations between the two nations at the U.S. National Defense University.

Chen's entourage includes a political commissar of the Second Artillery Force, deputy commanders of Military Area Commands and an intelligence department chief of the General Staff Headquarters, among others.

Source: Xinhua
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