Beijing’s defense ministry says closer ties will help build a ‘Chinese-Arab community with a shared future’
China’s Ministry of Defense has signaled its willingness to strengthen military cooperation with Gulf states to promote “world peace.The statement came weeks after President Xi Jinping attended the first China-Arab states summit and the China-Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Saudi Arabia.
Asked Thursday by a journalist about the “eight joint actionsproposed by Xi during the meetings, Defense Ministry spokesman Tan Kefei said, “Chinese military ready to work with militaries of Arab countries” to “jointly promote global security initiatives,” among others.
Deeper connections would contribute positively to “the construction of a Sino-Arab community of shared destiny,” he added.
Tan went on to describe the Chinese military as well as those of the Arab nations as “important forces for the maintenance of world peace and stability.He noted that Beijing and regional powers have shared military technology and held joint exercises in recent years.
According to the ministry spokesperson, this “fruitful cooperation“helped build”strategic mutual trustbetween China and Arab countries.
President Xi was on an official visit to Riyadh at the invitation of King Salman from Dec. 7 to 10.
Speaking at the China-Arab summit, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman revealed that discussions had taken place regarding the “creation of a free trade zone between China and the Persian Gulf countries.”
In addition to this, the Gulf States and China have confirmed their intention to work together to resolve “food and energy security issues,“as well as cooperating on supply chains,” the crown prince added.
Beijing and Riyadh have thus signed a number of agreements and memorandums of understanding.
The Chinese head of state also held a separate meeting with his Egyptian counterpart, Abdel Fattah el-Sissi.
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