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China, Thailand vow to further military ties

Source:   Time:

BEIJING, Sept. 17 (Xinhua) -- China and Thailand pledged to push forward bilateral military ties at a meeting of senior military officers in Beijing Friday.

Thailand was willing to promote state-to-state and military relations with China, said Songkitti Jaggabatara, Supreme Commander of Royal Thai Armed Forces, when meeting with Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie.

Songkitti Jaggabatara, who is on a week-long visit to China, said the two countries enjoyed close military contacts and friendly cooperation.

Liang, also a State Councilor, said the development of China-Thailand ties was an important part of China's foreign policy, and China was ready to work with Thailand to elevate state-to-state and military ties.

The meeting came two days after Liang met with Air Chief Marshal Itthaporn Subhawong, Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Thai Air Force, in Beijing.

In August, Thailand's Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan and Permanent Secretary for Defense Apichart Penkitti also met with Liang in China.

Earlier Friday, Chen Bingde, Chief of the General Staff of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) of China, also held talks with Songkitti Jaggabatara.

Chen said bilateral military cooperation achieved practical progress in areas such as military training, personnel training and exchanges between military academies.

China valued the bilateral friendship, and was ready to make efforts with Thailand to cope with common challenges, and promote ties, he said.

Thailand considered China's development a benefit to regional peace and stability, said Songkitti Jaggabatara.

Songkitti Jaggabatara will conclude the visit to China on Saturday.

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