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Maldivian president meets Zhang Gaoli

Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed on Sunday met Zhang Gaoli, who is leading a delegation of the Communist Party of China (CPC) for a three-day good-will visit to the Indian Ocean archipelago.

    Nasheed and Zhang, a member of the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau and Party chief of China's Tianjin municipality, exchanged views on how to deepen bilateral relations and promote party-to-party cooperation between the two sides, among other issues of mutual interest.

    Zhang conveyed greetings of Chinese President Hu Jintao to Nasheed at the very beginning of the meeting.

    Zhang said China and the Maldives are traditional friendly neighbors and the relationship between the two countries has been developing smoothly in the last 37 years since the establishing of diplomatic relations.

    China appreciated the Maldives' precious support for the Chinese government's stance on the issues related to Taiwan, Tibet, Xinjiang, and human rights, Zhang said, adding that China will join hands with the Maldives to promote cooperation between the two countries.

    Stressing that developing the CPC's relationship with parties in other countries is an important part of China's overall diplomatic strategy, Zhang said the CPC would like to promote exchange between the CPC and political parties of the Maldives.

    During their talks, Zhang briefed Nasheed on Tianjin municipality and said Tianjin will expand its cooperation with the Maldives.

    Nasheed said the Maldives is grateful for the tremendous support and help the Chinese government and people have been extending to the Maldives' economic and social development.

    Nasheed said he believed that establishing party-to-party relationship between the Maldivian Domocratic Party (MDP) and the CPC will contribute positively to the relationship between the two countries.

    The president stressed that Taiwan is an inalienable part of China and the Maldives will firmly adhere to one-China policy.

    Nasheed expressed his appreciation and admiration to the Chinese government in keeping China's economy in a healthy state despite the recession of the economy all over the world.

    Zhang also met Ibrahim Houssain Zaki, acting president of the MDP and Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, the president of Dhivehi Raiyyathunge Party (the Maldivian People's Party) during his visit to the Maldives.

    Zhang and his CPC delegation arrived in Male on Saturday at the invitation of the MDP after completing their visit to Nepal and Sri Lanka. The delegation's next destination is the Philippines.

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