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Israeli military chief visits China
Posted On: May 23, 2012
China and Israel have pledged to strengthen bilateral military ties during a week-long high-level visit by the Israeli military chief to Beijing.
During his visit, which commenced on Monday, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, met his Chinese counterpart, Chen Bingde.
Hailing the political, economic and cultural ties between the two countries over the past two decades, Bingde, the chief of General Staff of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA), said: "The Chinese side attaches importance to the ties with the Israeli military, willing to make concerted efforts with the Israeli side to deepen pragmatic cooperation and contribute to the overall bilateral ties."
The two military leaders discussed common contemporary security and strategic challenges, the regional security situation in the Middle East, and the ties between the two militaries, an IDF statement said.
Both expressed their satisfaction with the cooperation between the militaries and noted their commitment to continue to develop this relationship. Lt. Gen. Gantz also mentioned the mutual visits of senior officers from both armies, as well as joint courses that are expected in the near future.
The Israeli defence chief also met Chinese Vice President, Xi Jinping, on Tuesday and said that the Israeli armed forces would make concerted efforts with the Chinese side to promote ties between the two armies and nations.
China shares close ties with Israel's defence industry and has received sophisticated defence technology from it in the past. It is also a top Israeli trading partner.
The two countries cemented their military ties when Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak visited China in June 2011.
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