- Title: INDIA: Chinese Foreign Minister inaugurates memorial for Chinese monk in India.
- Date: 13th February 2007
- Summary: (W1) NALANDA (FEBRUARY 12, 2007) (ANI-ACCESS ALL) EXTERIOR OF THE MEMORIAL HALL BOARD READING XUAN ZANG MEMORIAL HALL STATUE OF XUAN ZANG, ANCIENT CHINESE TRAVELLER HUGE BELL
- Embargoed: 28th February 2007 12:14
- Location: India
- Country: India
- Topics: International Relations,Religion
- Reuters ID: LVA38ZFX30YCH3YU5G2JFORSUQB8
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: Chinese foreign minister Li Zhaoxing inaugurates a memorial dedicated to a 7th century Chinese monk in on his four-day visit to India. Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing inaugurated a memorial hall dedicated to Xuan Zang, ancient Chinese traveler, at Nalanda in eastern Bihar state, on Monday (February 12).
Xuan Zang, travelled to India in the seventh century AD. He stayed in India for 13 years, including five years in Nalanda and is credited for having laid the foundation of Buddhism in China.
Zhaoxing, who is on his four-day trip to India, said the memorial stood as a symbol of Sino-Indian friendship.
"China and India are both ancient civilisations. Over the centuries China and India have together written a splendid chapter in the annals of human civilization. This Xuan Zang memorial hall first started in the 1950's was started by the late premier of China, Zhou Enlai and India's very first Prime Minister Nehru. It stands now as symbol of China-India friendship," Zhaoxing said.
Indian tourism minister Ambika Soni and chief of Bihar state Nitish Kumar were also present on the occasion.
Zhaoxing is expected to meet his Indian counter Pranab Mukherjee to hold bilateral talks on Tuesday (February 13). The two will kick off "India-China friendship through tourism year" later in the week.
India and china have been long involved in border talks aimed at resolving a Long-running Himalayan Frontier dispute at the centre of lingering mistrust between the two Asian giants.
The two countries have been pushing economic ties despite their border dispute. A visit by Chinese President Hu Jintao to India in November focused on boosting two-way trade, expected to double to $40 billion by 2010.
But both sides have made little progress in overcoming deep differences over their 3,500 km (2,200 mile) frontier, despite several rounds of talks over the past decade.
India remains suspicious of rival neighbour Pakistan's close strategic ties with Beijing, and disputes Chinese rule over 38,000 square km (15,000 square miles) of barren, icy and uninhabited land on the Tibetan plateau, seized by China in 1962.
For its part, China does not recognise the remote, sparsely populated state of Arunachal Pradesh as part of India and claims its mountainous district of Tawang once belonged to Tibet.
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