Beijing: China's military on Thursday backed moves by President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi to improve bilateral ties, saying it is the "right choice" for the Chinese dragon and the Indian elephant to dance together.
Modi and Xi met in Tamil Nadu's coastal town of Mamallapuram on October 11 and 12 during which they discussed a wide range of bilateral issues.
It was the second edition of the informal summit between the two leaders. The first informal meeting between Modi and Xi was held in the picturesque Chinese lake city of Wuhan in April 2018, months after a 73-day face off between the armies of the two countries in Doklam tri-juction.
"It is the right choice that the Chinese dragon and the Indian elephant dance together," Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman senior Col Wu Qian told a media briefing here in response to a question on how the Chinese military viewed the Mamallapuram summit between Xi and Modi. Wu said the two leaders agreed to bring the bilateral partnership closer.
"Under the guidance and consensus reached between the two leaders, China is ready to work with the Indian side for properly managing differences, enhance mutual trust, maintain and improve exchanges and cooperation in high level exchanges, dialogue in specialised areas, exercises and training and put relations in right direction and friendly cooperation," he added.
The two-million strong Chinese military, which is the world's largest, is led by President Xi, who also heads the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).
After his meeting with Modi in Mamallapuram, Xi called for a long term plan to develop India-China relations, saying that differences should not be allowed to dilute cooperation.
Xi said, "China and India should be good neighbours and good partners who live in harmony and move forward hand in hand. To achieve this, 'Dragon and Elephant Dance' is the only correct choice for China and India, which is in the fundamental interests of both countries and their peoples."
-By K J M Varma