US, Chinese presidents discuss Ukraine situation

Last Updated: Mon, Mar 10, 2014 12:50 hrs

Beijing, March 10 (IANS) Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Barack Obama discussed the situation in Ukraine among other issues during the course of a telephone conversation Monday.

Stressing China's objective and fair stance on Ukraine, Xi said, given the complexity of the Ukrainian situation, it was very important for all parties concerned to remain calm and exercise restraint in order to avoid escalation of the crisis, Xinhua reported.

Urging a political and diplomatic solution to the crisis, Xi said China hoped that all parties concerned would tackle their differences through communication and coordination

China had adopted an open attitude toward any proposals and suggestions that could help ease the tensions in Ukraine and was willing to keep in touch with the US and other relevant parties on the issue, he added.

This apart President Obama expressed sympathies with the families of those aboard a Malaysian airliner that went missing Saturday, and he said the US was ready to work with China over search and rescue efforts.

Xi said China was also deeply concerned about the safety of the passengers and crew members on board the ill-fated aircraft.

"I've already instructed related departments to carry out search and rescue operations and to make preparations for emergency response and follow-up work," Xi said, adding that "China will stay in touch with the US".

Besides, Obama also mourned the deaths of Chinese civilians slain in a terrorist attack in southwest China's Kunming city March 1.

Xi and Obama also discussed bilateral issues of mutual interest.

"I met with President Obama twice last year and we reached a series of important consensus to push for a new stage for building a new type of major country relationship between China and the United States," Xi said.

China was ready to work with the US to build a new model of major-country relationship, respect and accommodate each other's core interests and major concerns, and enhance dialogue, mutual trust and cooperation, in a bid to achieve a sustainable and healthy development of the China-US relations, Xi said.

"I'm looking forward to the next meeting with Obama in the near future, and I welcome the upcoming visit of Michelle Obama to China," Xi said.

For his part, Obama said that the U.S.-China relationship had developed positively since he met Xi at his Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in the US last year.

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