Chinese leaders extend New Year greetings
                 English.news.cn | 2014-01-29 18:30:33 | Editor: Bi Mingxin

[FOCUS]CHINA-BEIJING-TOP LEADERS-SPRING FESTIVAL GATHERING (CN)
Chinese President Xi Jinping (front, R) shakes hands with a guest at a Spring Festival gathering in Beijing, capital of China, Jan. 29, 2014. Top Chinese leaders attended a Spring Festival gathering on Wednesday and extended Lunar New Year greetings to Chinese people at home and abroad. (Xinhua/Ma Zhancheng)

BEIJING, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- Chinese leaders on Wednesday extended Lunar New Year greetings to Chinese people at home and abroad ahead of the traditional Spring Festival, which falls on Friday.

President Xi Jinping sent greetings to Chinese from all walks of life and expressed thanks to foreigners who have contributed to China's modernization at a festival gathering at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

"I wish a joyful festival, good health and happiness for you and your families," Xi said.

Premier Li Keqiang hailed the efforts of Chinese from all ethnic groups in conquering difficulties and making new achievements last year while delivering a speech at the celebration.

Targets for economic and social development were met in 2013, Li said, adding that effective measures were taken to realize stable consumer prices, create new jobs and improve people's livelihoods.

Li pledged more efforts to deal with issues of concern, including housing, medical treatment, social security, education, food safety and air pollution.

Other top leaders, including Zhang Dejiang, Yu Zhengsheng, Liu Yunshan, Wang Qishan and Zhang Gaoli, also attended the celebration.

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Backgrounder: Chinese Lunar New Year

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