Chinese, Serbian FMs hold phone talks over ties

(Xinhua) 11:27, April 10, 2022

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (Photo: Xinhua)

BEIJING, April 9 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday held a phone conversation with Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic over bilateral ties.

Selakovic first conveyed sincere regards from Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic to Chinese President Xi Jinping, expressing appreciation for Xi's immediate congratulations to President Vucic on his reelection, wishing the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China a complete success, and expressing the belief that China will make greater progress in its development under the leadership of President Xi.

The Serbian side is proud of its profound traditional friendship and comprehensive strategic partnership with China and thanks China for firmly supporting Serbia in safeguarding its core interests, said Selakovic, noting that Serbia also firmly supports China in safeguarding its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and opposes any attempt to split China.

Overcoming the impact of the turbulent international situation, the cooperation between China and Serbia has made steady progress, said Selakovic, noting that the two countries have engaged in high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, the Belgrade to Novi Sad (Beno) section of the Hungary-Serbia railway successfully opened to traffic, and the economic and trade cooperation between the two countries have achieved unprecedented results.

Chinese enterprises have actively participated in Serbian national development and played an indispensable role in the country's economic and social development, Selakovic added, saying that his country is ready to deepen its iron-clad friendship with China and join hands together to meet challenges.

Wang conveyed Chinese President Xi's cordial greetings and best wishes to President Vucic, saying that President Xi immediately sent a congratulatory message to Vucic on his re-election, which fully demonstrates the high-level mutual trust and deep friendship between the two heads of state.

As Serbia's long-term and reliable iron-clad friend as well as its comprehensive strategic partner, China will firmly support Serbia in safeguarding its sovereignty, territorial integrity and national dignity, pursuing an independent foreign policy, and making judgements and decisions in accordance with the fundamental interests of the country and its people, Wang said.

China opposes external forces' exerting political pressure on sovereign states or forcing other countries to take sides through coercion, he added.

China stands ready to work with Serbia to continuously support each other on international and multilateral platforms, including resisting attempts to politicize and instrumentalize human rights affairs, Wang said.

China, Wang added, is ready to work with Serbia to accelerate the implementation of the important consensus reached by the two heads of state and the construction of the Novi Sad-Subotica section of the Budapest-Belgrade Railway, support the sound operation and development of key cooperative enterprises, and sign bilateral free trade agreement as soon as possible to inject strong impetus into cooperation and help Serbia further enhance its competitiveness.

Selakovic said that Serbia is firmly committed to upholding the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and will not turn its back on its true friends, adding that China has always upheld a fair and just position in international affairs and actively promoted peace talks, which Serbia highly appreciates.

Wang stressed that under the current situation, the international community should be highly vigilant against the resurgence of the Cold War mentality and jointly resist attempts to split the world.

In the face of a complex and volatile external environment, Wang said, as long as Serbia stays focused and sticks to development, it will overcome the difficulties and obstacles on its way forward. He expressed the belief that Serbia has the wisdom and ability to safeguard its legitimate rights and interests.

The two sides agreed that the phone call is very timely and necessary. Fully confident of the future of bilateral relations, the two countries will continue to firmly support each other and push for new progress in their comprehensive strategic partnership. 

(Web editor: Peng Yukai, Bianji)


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