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Xi offers condolences to Saudi Arabia over King Abdullah's death

(Xinhua)    09:23, January 24, 2015

BEIJING, Jan. 23-- Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday sent a message of condolences to Saudi Arabia's new monarch over the death of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz.

In his message to Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, new ruler of the world's largest oil exporter, Xi, on behalf of the Chinese government and people, deeply mourned the passing away of King Abdullah.

He also expressed his sincere sympathies to King Salman, the Saudi government and people, and the late king's family.

As an outstanding leader of Saudi Arabia, he said, King Abdullah has made significant contributions to promoting national prosperity and stability and safeguarding peace and development of the Middle East, the Gulf region and the world at large.

Xi added that the late king, an old friend of the Chinese people, made remarkable contributions to pushing forward the development of China-Saudi Arabia strategic friendly relations, boosting the two countries' exchange and cooperation in various fields, and promoting friendship between the two peoples.

The Chinese president said that King Abdullah's death has not only caused a tremendous loss to the Saudis, but also deprived the Chinese people of a sincere friend.

The Chinese government and people highly cherish the two countries' friendship, he said, voicing his belief that with concerted efforts, China-Saudi Arabia strategic friendly relations will definitely keep developing.

Abdullah, born in 1924, was hospitalized in December for pneumonia and was put on assisted breathing. He died at 1:00 a.m. on Friday (2200 GMT Thursday).

Salman, Abdullah's half-brother, has become the new king of Saudi Arabia, while Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz was declared the new crown prince. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Ma Xiaochun,Bianji)

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