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Greek President Meets Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing

On July 1, 2003, Greek President Costis Stephanopoulos met with visiting Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing at the presidential palace. Both sides noted they would promote the development of relations between the two countries and expressed their shared will to strengthen consultation and cooperation in international affairs.

In the talks, Stephanopoulos said that the ancient civilization and modern development of China had left deep impression on him when he visited China in 1983. He said that the Greek people bore the best feelings towards the Chinese people, and Greece admired the Chinese government and people for their achievements in the fight against severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Stephanopoulos said that what was more joyful was Beijing would host the Olympics right after Athens. He hoped the cooperation between the two countries in hosting the Olympics would promote the comprehensive development of Greek-Chinese relations.

Li said that Greece, as a great nation, had once made remarkable contributions to the progress and development of the human race. He noted the there was friendship and mutual admiration between the Greek and Chinese peoples, adding that China attached great importance to its friendly relations with Greece. He also said that with great potentials for economic cooperation between the two countries yet to be tapped, China hoped to make joint efforts with Greece to further promote and deepen the existing good ties between the two sides.

Both sides also exchanged opinions on the situation in Asia. Stephanopoulos said that China played a role that had global influence and Greece would like to see China continue to play an important role in international affairs, especially in handling hot issues of Asia.

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