On August 7, 2008 Rahul Gandhi, General Secretary of the Indian National Congress (INC) and Wang Jiarui, Director, International Liaison Department of the C Communist Party of China (CPC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the presence of the President of INC Sonia Gandhi who was also the Chairperson of United Progressive Alliance (UPA) I at that time, President of China, Xi Jinping who was then the Vice-President of China and Congress leader Anand Sharma.
Sonia Gandhi, President, Indian National Congress has confirmed the signing of the 2008 MoU with the Communist Party of China (CPC) in a written interview with the Xinhua News Agency. The interview was carried on June 29, 2011. The title of the article was ‘Indian ruling party hopes to boost ties with China’s leaders.
GoaChronicle.com in an earlier expose article on Congress-CPU 2008 MoU investigations reported excerpts of the interview. We have now accessed text of report in English by the official Chinese news agency Xinhua (New China Agency).
The article appeared in the Xinhua on June 29, 2011. In a report leaked out by Wikileaks – Global Intelligence Files. GoaChronicle.com accessed an email sent by BBC to Stratfor (Global Intelligence Agency) under the Email ID – 662942. Email subject titled: BBC Monitoring Alert – China. it reports the entire Xinhua interview of Sonia Gandhi.
Here is the text report in English text of report in English by the official Chinese news agency Xinhua (New China Agency):
Indian ruling party hopes to boost ties with China’s leaders
Beijing, 29 June: The Indian National Congress (INC) party and the Communist Party of China should intensify their exchanges, especially at the level of the younger leadership of the two parties, INC leader Sonia Gandhi says.
“Such a dialogue should address all vital issues of mutual concern through visits, seminars and a productive exchange of ideas, skills and experiences,” Gandhi said in a recent written interview with Xinhua as the CPC celebrates the 90th anniversary of its founding on July 1.
Those areas could include infrastructure building, inclusive growth, employment generation, and environment protection, among other things, Gandhi said.
“The future beckons us to build what has the potential to become one of the foremost and most substantive relationships of the 21st century and one that is of lasting benefit for the people of both our countries,”
Gandhi said. India and China have pursued different paradigms of development as they have different political systems, natural resources and endowments, Gandhi said.
Both countries have scored many achievements since independence and liberation respectively, but they also face challenges to greater development and prosperity, she said.
Both countries have the potential to learn from each other, she said. Sonia Gandhi visited China in 2007 and 2008 as INC chief.
She said that INC and CPC signed a Memorandum of Understanding during her visit to China in August 2008. One of the key components of that memorandum was a shared commitment to strengthen exchanges amongst the younger leadership in the two parties.
More visits and exchanges, particularly among the youth wings of the two parties and between students of the two countries, are extremely important, she said. That’s to ensure that the generation of young leaders in China and India know and understand each other well, she said, thus deepening the relationship between the two parties, the two peoples and the two countries.
The INC and CPC have engaged in useful dialogue and exchanges over the years, she said.
She also recalled her 1988 visit to China with her late husband, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. She described the visit as a “historic one” that initiated a new chapter in the relations between India and China and had a far-reaching positive impact on bilateral interactions between the two sides.
Asia, which embraces India and China, is set to play an increasingly important role in world affairs and the India-China relationship must be a key instrument in shaping the changing world order, she said.
Noting that the Indian and Chinese governments have played a central role in deepening the bilateral ties, Gandhi stressed that she is confident that “our Party-to-Party ties will foster greater mutual understanding between our leadership and our two people, and thereby impart positive momentum to the growth of multi-faceted relations between the two countries.”
Currently, India and China are engaged in building a strategic and cooperative partnership and it is significant that China has already emerged as India’s largest trading partner, she said.
She also said that there may be some issues on which both sides have differences of approach and that’s natural given the size and complexity of the two countries.
“The leaderships of both India and China are engaged in deepening political understanding which fosters respect for each others’ sensitivities,” she said.
China and India last year celebrated the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties. This year, activities of the
China-India Year of Exchanges have already begun.
The 60th anniversary and the Year of Exchanges are extremely important to build further mutual confidence and better understanding, Gandhi said.
“At the party level, I believe that we should foster greater cultural and social linkages, especially among the youth, even as we promote trade, investment at the national levels, and international cooperation on multilateral issues of importance to both countries and on which we can adopt a common approach,” she said.
CCP’s International Department is an important and yet often overlooked unit of the China’s power and influence under the CPC. While the department was positioned for diplomacy with other foreign communist parties, the ILD-CPC has reshaped itself over the past 20 years as a flexible and alternative channel to traditional state-to-state diplomacy with other foreign parties globally not only communist parties. The department’s core objective is to use party-to-party contacts to help safeguard the country’s interests and facilitate state-to-state relations.