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Ethiopia, China eye stronger ties


08:56, March 25, 2013

ADDIS ABABA, March 24 (Xinhua) -- Ethiopia and China on Sunday expressed the hope to lift their cooperation and bilateral relations to a new level.

The two sides exchanged views on the issue during a meeting between Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn and Chen Fengxiang, deputy head of the International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

Chen is here as the head of a CPC delegation attending the 9th Organizational Congress of the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), the ruling party in Ethiopia, held in the town of Bahir Dar, some 560 km north of Addis Ababa.

"The meeting between the EPRDF leadership and the Chinese delegation is a strong testimony to the great importance the EPRDF attaches to its relations with the CPC," Chen told Xinhua after the Sunday meeting.

Calling the discussions "fruitful," the Chinese official said that both sides have spoken highly of the past cooperation and current relations between the two countries as well as the two ruling parties, and are committed to further strengthening such cooperation and relations.

"We reiterated our readiness to further develop and strengthen our relations with the EPRDF on the basis of the four principles governing party-to-party relations, namely independence, mutual respect, complete equality and no interference in each other's internal affairs," he noted.

The Ethiopian leader also expressed his "willingness to further promote the development of the cooperation between the two countries and the two parties' friendly relations," Chen added.

The ongoing EPRDF Organizational Congress has attracted the participation of representatives of political parties from more than a dozen foreign countries.

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