Chinese Communist Party leaders to attend Congress conference

Thursday, October 28, 2010

NEW DELHI - Leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) will take part at a conference here Nov 1 organised by the Congress as part of exchanges between the two parties to strengthen their mutual ties.

The conference “China and India: 60 Years and Beyond” is being organised by the Congress’ foreign affairs department.

The conference is taking place at a time when relationship between the two countries has gone through some strains over Chinese insistence on stapled visa for people from Jammu and Kashmir, denial of visa to a senior military officer posted in the state and its assistance to projects in Pakistani Kashmir.

The conference will have sessions on the political basis of India-China relations, economic and cultural ties between the two countries, and strengthening mutual trust.

Congress MP Karan Singh, head of the party’s foreign affairs department, will deliver the welcome address at the meeting where a message from Congress chief Sonia Gandhi would be read out.

Zhou Yongkang, member of the politburo’s standing committee, and External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna will be the the chief guests at the conference.

Ai-Ping, vice-minister of the international department of Communist Party of China’s central committee (IDCPC), as well as Wang Jiarui, minister of IDCPC, would be among the speakers from China.

Union Ministers Salman Khurshid, Sachin Pilot, Jyotiraditya Scindia and former minister Shashi Tharoor are expected to participate in the conference. The conference will also be attended by academics and scholars.

Congress sources said the decision to hold such conferences was taken during visit of Congress president Sonia Gandhi to China in 2008.

They said that the conference is significant given the role played by the CPC in formulating China’s foreign policy.

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