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Yeltsin Says Russian-Chinese Ties In New Stage

Moscow, April 23 (RFE/RL) - Russian President Boris Yeltsin says Russian-Chinese relations have entered a new stage of mutual understanding, trust and cooperation.

In an interview with China's official Xinhua News Agency on the eve of his visit to Beijing, Yeltsin said yesterday that Russia has good reasons to regard such a relationship as a constructive partnership orientated toward the 21st century.

Yeltsin said there had been significant progress in Russian-Chinese relations in the past three years. He said both countries had begun regular political dialogues and their common borders were "becoming a bond of cooperation."

As a result Yeltsin said there are currently no bilateral problems of a political nature. He also said that Moscow viewed cooperation with China as being of special importance because it would help Russia's own economic reform.

Yeltsin arrives in China tomorrow for a three-day visit during which he is to sign up to 10 documents and a political declaration defining principles of bilateral ties and common views on world issues and regional security. Yeltsin and the leaders of the central asian countries of Tajikistan. Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan will also sign a pact with China on confidence-building measures along their common border.