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Rumsfeld visit to pave way for summit meet
(China Daily/chinadaily.com.cn)
Updated: 2005-10-19 06:01

US Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld arrived in Beijing yesterday on an official visit described by international-affairs experts as "an important step" towards increasing bilateral military exchanges.

Chinese Defense Minister Cao Gangchuan (right) gestures at a welcoming ceremony hosted in honour of visiting US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in Beijing October 19, 2005. Rumsfeld arrived in Beijing Tuesday for a three-day visit, his first as the US secretary of defense. [newsphoto]

Rumsfeld's first trip since he took up his current position is also expected to pave the way for US President George W. Bush's visit to China next month.

The White House announced on Monday that Bush would come to China after attending the November 18-19 Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) summit in the South Korean city of Busan.

In New York last month, President Hu Jintao and his US counterpart agreed to push for constructive co-operation.

"Rumsfeld's visit signifies the continuation of increasing mutual trust between the leaders of the two countries," said Zhu Feng, professor at the School of International Studies of Peking University.

The relationship between China and the US is playing an increasingly important role in regional and global affairs, said Zhu; and if bilateral military relations lag behind, it will generate a negative influence on bilateral ties, he noted.
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