Russia sets closer ties with China as overriding priority — defense minister

BEIJING, November 18. /TASS/. Strengthening and expanding ties with China remains Russia’s overriding priority, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Tuesday.

“Amid a highly volatile world situation, it becomes particularly important to strengthen reliable good-neighbourly relations between our countries,” Shoigu said at talks with his Chinese counterpart General Chang Wanquan.

“This is not only an important factor for security of states but also a contribution to peace and stability on the Eurasian continent and beyond,” he said, adding that “regular private meetings between the leaders of Russia and China give a powerful impetus to development of bilateral partnership”.

The minister noted that next year marks the 70th anniversary of the Allied victory in WWII. “The peoples of our countries took heavy casualties in it,” Shoigu said. “Russia’s and China’s solidarity is of principal importance amid attempts to falsify history and glorify fascism.”

Russia and China also started to regularly hold joint naval and anti-terrorism drills, the minister said, adding that the countries’ military forces “showed a high level of cooperation” during an operation to escort vessels carrying Syria’s chemical weapons. Much work was also done during this year’s joint Naval Interaction exercises in the East China Sea, he said.

Full article: Russia sets closer ties with China as overriding priority — defense minister (ITAR-TASS)

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