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China & Eritrea Agree to Strengthen 'Win-Win Cooperation'

© AP Photo / Florence LoChinese Premier Li Qiang, right, and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki shake hands as they attend a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Monday, May 15, 2023.
Chinese Premier Li Qiang, right, and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki shake hands as they attend a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Monday, May 15, 2023.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 15.05.2023
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties between Eritrea and China. On 14 May, at the invitation of Chinese leader Xi Jinping, Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki paid a state visit to the PRC.
The two nations should boost their cooperation in various spheres of mutual interest and strengthen their strategic partnership, Chinese Premier Li Qiang told visiting Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki during a meeting in Beijing on Monday.

The countries should "deepen their mutually beneficial win-win cooperation and continuously enrich their strategic partnership," Premier Li is quoted as saying.

Eritrea's President Afwerki, for his part, hailed China's efforts to transform the present world order so that all countries may be regarded as equals, expressing his confidence that these efforts will yield genuine results. He explained that "marginalized" nations support China in its quest to bring its vision of a just and fairer world to fruition.

"The contributions made by the People's Republic of China to transform the world order into a more just and fair relationship among people and nations will definitely cause global challenges and transform the systems that we have," he said, adding that "the marginalized continent of Africa and the rest of the world will heavily defend and expect more contributions from the People's Republic of China."

Prior to Afwerki’s visit, China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said at a regular press briefing that Eritrea is an important partner for the PRC in the Horn of Africa, and both nations share a traditional friendship.
He recalled that in 2022, the countries upgraded their relations to a strategic partnership, and this year is the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries.
The official also said that over these years of fruitful cooperation, China and Eritrea" have deepened political mutual trust", and maintained close communication in the field of regional and international affairs.
The visit of Eritrea's leader, according to Wang, is expected to give a "new impetus to the comprehensive and in-depth development of China-Eritrea relations".

Deepening China-Eritrea Ties to Secure 'Regional Peace and International Justice'

During the visit, Chinese President Xi Jinping hosted a welcome ceremony and welcome banquet for President Afwerki. The latter laid a wreath at the Monument to the People's Heroes in Tiananmen Square. After a welcome ceremony held at the Great Hall of the People, the leaders held talks on various regional and international issues.
According to the Chinese media, Xi underlined that Beijing views its relations with Eritrea from a strategic and long-term perspective. Given the current international situation full of instability and uncertainty, developing China-Eritrea relations is not only in line with the common and long-term interests of the two nations, he noted, but is also of great significance in terms of "maintaining regional peace and international justice."
President Xi emphasized that China appreciates Eritrea's long-term adherence to an independent foreign policy, firmly supports the country in safeguarding its own sovereignty, security, and development interests, and opposes any external interference in its internal affairs. He stated that China encourages its enterprises to invest in Eritrea and is willing to discuss strengthening cooperation between the nations in infrastructure development, telecommunications, agriculture, mining, fishery and other fields.
President Afwerki, for his part, underscored that Eritrean people will never forget the support provided by the Chinese people for the nation's "independence and liberation." He noted that Eritrea is willing to deepen cooperation with China, hoping that this strategic partnership will help the country to boost its national economic and social development.