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Serious Issues Only, Kagame Hosts Top Chinese Legislator in Rwanda

China and Rwanda agreed to enhance cooperation in various fields during a rare visit made here by a senior Chinese leader from Tuesday to Wednesday.


Chairman of the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC), holds talks with Rwandan Speaker of Chamber of Deputies Donatille Mukabalisa in Kigali, Rwanda, March 22,

The official goodwill visit to the central African country made by top Chinese legislator Zhang Dejiang is the first one by a Chairman of the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) since the two countries established diplomatic ties in 1971.

China and Rwanda have forged a brotherly friendship during the past 45 years since the two countries have always treated each other as equals, Zhang said at a meeting with Rwandan President Paul Kagame on Wednesday.

Zhang conveyed Chinese President Xi Jinping’s greetings to President Kagame, stressing that China is willing to deepen pragmatic cooperation with Rwanda in a comprehensive manner.

Zhang Dejiang (2nd L), chairman of the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC), holds talks with Rwandan Senate President Bernard Makuza in Kigali, Rwanda.

China appreciates Rwanda’s political stability, economic growth and social harmony in recent years, Zhang said, stressing China will continue to firmly back the country to follow a development path in line with its national conditions.

He called on the two sides to actively implement the major China-Africa cooperation plans announced by President Xi at the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) summit in South Africa’s Johannesburg last December.

The two countries can prioritize cooperation on infrastructure construction, human resources development, the manufacturing industry, agriculture and other fields, Zhang said.

For his part, Kagame said Rwanda appreciates China’s long-term support and aid to the country, especially for its transformation.

Rwanda will always be a committed supporter and participant in China-Africa friendly cooperation, he said, expressing willingness to enhance pragmatic cooperation with China under the FOCAC framework.

Zhang Dejiang (1st R), chairman of the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC), visits the Kigali Genocide Memorial Center in Kigali, Rwanda.

During his stay in Kigali, the top Chinese legislator also held talks with Speaker of Chamber of Deputies Donatille Mukabalisa on Tuesday and with Senate President Bernard Makuza on Wednesday, promoting exchanges between the NPC and Rwanda’s Parliament in a bid to strengthen China-Rwanda ties.

On Wednesday afternoon, Zhang and Rwandan Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi attended the groundbreaking ceremony of a China-aided government complex.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Chinese delegation visited the Kigali Genocide Memorial Center, which commemorates the Rwandan genocide in 1994.

Rwanda is the second stop of Zhang’s 10-day Africa tour, which has taken him to Zambia. The top legislator of China is now visiting Kenya.

By Robert Muriisa.

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