Ambassador Sun Yuxi Hosts "China-India Friendship Year" Reception

On the afternoon of January 6, 2005, the residence of the Chinese Ambassador to India was decorated with lanterns and colorful streamers. A red banner with the words "China-India Friendship Year" was hung on the building of the residence. Several dozens of large-sized photos were displayed around the lawn of the residence. Chinese tea, candied fruits, CDs of Chinese songs and music and picture albums on China-India friendly ties were arranged neatly for the honored guests. Ambassador Sun Yuxi solemnly hosted "China-India Friendship Year" reception at his residence, raising the curtain of the "China-India Friendship Year". Mr. Shyam Saran, Foreign Secretary of India (Vice Foreign Minister) was invited to be present on behalf of the Indian Government. Also present were 300-plus guests including former Defense Minister Mr.Pant, former Cabinet Minister Mr. Singh, guests from all walks of life of India, representatives of Chinese Indians and overseas Chinese,Chinese companies, Chinese students in India and staff members of the Chinese Embassy.

Ambassador Sun Yuxi delivered a speech at the reception, noting Premier Wen and Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh jointly declared the year 2006 as the "Year of China-India Friendship" during Wen's visit to India in April, 2005. It was the first time for the two countries to jointly launch such an activity in the 2,000-year history of exchanges between China and India. Within this year, more than 50 programs would be held by both sides covering political, defense, economic and trade, culture and tourism, education, science and technology fields.

Ambassador Sun also stressed that China and India were neighbors and friends. Hindi-Chini Bhai Bhai was the main rhythm of the China-India relations in the middle of last century, and China-India everlasting friendship is the long-cherished dream of the two nations and two peoples. "China-India Friendship Year" is just the beginning of developing friendly relations upon new stage between our two countries. It is also believed the friendship among 2 billion people will greatly help to build friendship among all nations in the world.

The messages of congratulations hailing the formal beginning of "China-India Friendship Year" by Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao, and Indian President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh were read out loud at the reception.

The photo exhibition entitled "Review on China-India Friendship" was also held at the reception at which more than 60 pictures on the history of friendly exchanges between China and India since the establishment of diplomatic ties 55 years ago were on show. The Beijing Opera Troupe of Liaoning which had attended the 8th Indian national theatre festival performed Chinese traditional Beijing Opera highlights for the reception. Excellent performances were warmly welcomed by the guests.

Accompanied by Ambassador Sun, Indian Foreign Secretary Saran tasted the Chinese tea and watched the Beijing Opera performances with great interest. He said the reception was a good celebratory function of the "Friendship Year" which reflected the long-term friendship between China and India, and the Indian Government would also hold many activities within this year when he was interviewed by the New Delhi Bureau Chief of the China Central Television.

The hot Chinese tea with delicate flavor drove away the chill around the guests. The guests tasted the tea and watched the Beijing Opera performances, feeling very happy to have the chance to experience the performances of the best of Chinese culture and China-India friendship. Many guests, especially some Indian families, said they were deeply moved by the precious photos of friendly meetings between Chinese and Indian leaders. The late leaders were still being missed. They and the contemporary leaders had made great contributions to the friendship cause of the two great nations. We should devote ourselves to the China-India friendship for generations.

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