Li Peng Meets IPU Leader in New Delhi

Li Peng, Chairman of National People's Congress (NPC) of China, said Friday in New Delhi that his visit to India is to promote cooperation between India and China, the two ancient civilizations and the two biggest developing countries in the world.

Following a meeting with Najma Heptulla, current president of Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and deputy speaker of Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Indian parliament, Li said his visit to the South Asian country till now has achieved far more than he had expected though only one third of his schedule had been finished.

Li, who arrived here Tuesday after a two-day visit from Mumbai, 1,407 kilometers southwest of the capital city, said he had experienced warmth and friendship of the Indian people soon after he touched down on the Indian territory.

Before a grand reception held by Heptulla in honor of the Chinese leader, Li urged for more exchanges between the parliaments of the two countries in order to promote mutual understanding between the peoples of the two countries.

In her welcome address, Heptulla said she was pleased to meet Li for the third time in six months since last July when she was warmly received by and had useful exchange of views with the NPC chairman during her visit to China.

Expressing her hope that new areas of cooperation between the two countries could be identified during Li's visit, Heptulla said the visit showed the importance Beijing attached to relations with New Delhi.

The Indian government attached importance to the visit by Li, Heptulla told the NPC chairman.

She said that New Delhi desires to have friendly and good neighborly relations with Beijing based on the Five Principals of Peaceful Coexistence and mutual sensitivity to each other's concerns and believes that all outstanding problems between the two neighbors could and should be resolved through peaceful dialogue.

On parliamentary cooperation at the IPU, Heptulla informed Li that among the problems being discussed at the IPU were the new challenges which need new means of global cooperation to handle. This was particularly important for countries like India and China with their multi-ethnic and multi-religious societies, she added.

Announcing that IPU would convene a joint conference with the World Trade Organization and European Parliament in June this year in Geneva to give a parliamentary dimension to trade, Heptulla told Li Peng that China would be a member of the Steering committee to this conference.

In the reception presented by some 300 members of the Indian parliament and well-known personage, Heptulla introduced many of them to the Chinese leader, who held cordial talks with them.

People's Daily Online ---