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China pledges closer defense ties with Finland

(Xinhua)

08:26, October 23, 2012

BEIJING, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- China on Monday pledged to seek closer military relations with Finland.

The pledge came out of a Monday meeting between Defense Minister Liang Guanglie and Permanent Secretary of Finland's Ministry of Defense Arto Raty.

Liang said Finland was one of the first Western countries to forge relations with China. The two countries established diplomatic ties on Oct. 28, 1950.

Based on mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, the two countries have carried out fruitful cooperation in multiple fields in recent years, Liang said.

China values its relations with Finland and would like to work with Finland to bring bilateral cooperation to a higher level and create benefits for both sides, Liang said.

Military-to-military relations have expanded bilateral cooperation and exchanges through high-level visits, Liang said.

"China takes a positive attitude toward developing military ties with Finland. With joint efforts, military-to-military relations will definitely see new progress," Liang said.

Raty said close military-to-military exchanges and cooperation in recent years have boosted the development of the two militaries and contributed to world peace and stability.

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