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New Chinese Amb. Pledges Better Bilateral Ties

Posted March. 18, 2010 10:27,   


New Chinese ambassador to South Korea Zhang Xinsheng yesterday said he will upgrade what he called the best Sino-South Korean relationship to a higher level.

In a highly unusual move by a Chinese diplomat, Zhang received South Korean Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan aboard an airplane yesterday at Shanghai Pudong International Airport.

Zhang will accompany Yu on his three-day visit to Beijing, including Yu`s meetings with Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.

Seoul completed the agreement process for Zhang in an unusually speedy manner. South Korea is known to have finished the process Tuesday 10 days after receiving a request and will inform China of the result.

The process usually takes two to four weeks.

An official at the Foreign Ministry in Seoul said the speedy process was in large part a response to China`s completion last year of the agreement process for the South Korean ambassador to Beijing in just 17 days.

Zhang said that as close neighbors, Seoul and Beijing have shown deep interest in each other, adding South Korea is “a thick book” for him and that he will read it with enthusiasm.

Having visited Seoul in 1990 before the two countries established formal diplomatic relations, Zhang said that he is “deeply impressed” by South Korea`s economic and social progress as one of four "Asian dragons" 20 years ago.

spear@donga.com zeitung@donga.com