China calls on Obama to strengthen military ties | india | Hindustan Times
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China calls on Obama to strengthen military ties

india Updated: Jan 21, 2009 07:12 IST

AFP
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China called for stronger military ties with the United States on Tuesday, just hours before Barack Obama was to take power in Washington.

Beijing said there were currently "difficulties" in military relations between the two nations and urged the United States to remove obstacles to an improved relationship.

"In this new period we hope that both China and the US could make joint efforts to create favourable conditions and improve and promote military-to-military relations," Ministry of Defence spokesman Colonel Hu Changming told reporters.

"We call on the US to remove the obstacles to the growth of military relations between the two countries and to create favourable conditions for the healthy growth of military relations."

Hu did not specify the nature of these obstacles, but China has repeatedly demanded that the United States cuts its military links with Taiwan.

Last month, China's defence minister called on the United States to drop a planned weapons sale to Taiwan, saying it threatened Sino-US defence cooperation.

The Pentagon notified Congress in October that it planned to sell $6.5 billion of military hardware to Taiwan, Beijing's longtime diplomatic rival.

"China-US military relations in the past 30 years show that only when the two sides have taken full account of each others' core interests and concerns could the two sides enjoy firm political basis for military-to-military relations," Hu said on Tuesday.