Chinese President Xi Jinping (C, front) is received by Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras (C, rear) after arriving at the Diagoras International Airport on the Rhodes Island in Greece, July 13, 2014. Xi Jinping arrived in Greece on Sunday to make a stopover on his way to Latin America, where he will pay state visits to Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba, as well as attend the sixth BRICS Summit. (Xinhua/Li Xueren)
RHODES, Greece, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping said here on Sunday that his country would strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation with Greece to further enhance bilateral ties.
Xi made the remarks when making a stopover on the southeastern Greek island of Rhodes on his way to Latin America. He was warmly received at the Diagoras International Airport by Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras.
Hailing the profound traditional friendship between China and Greece, Xi said the two countries, both ancient civilizations, have always understood, supported and helped each other.
Xi noted that both Greek President Karolos Papoulias and Prime Minister Samaras came a long way to the island to receive him during the stopover, which is strongly indicative of the Greek people's deep affection toward the Chinese people and the great importance the Greek government attaches to its relations with China.
The Greek economy is improving steadily, said Xi, adding that China is willing to continue to do everything within its capacity to support Greece and strengthen their mutually-beneficial cooperation, so as to push forward the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.
On his part, Samaras said China is a good friend and partner of Greece and the Greek government and people are pleased to receive President Xi. He wished Xi's visit to Latin America a complete success.
It was the second visit by a Chinese leader to the European country within a month. During Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's trip to Greece on June 19-21, the two countries reached a broad consensus on deepening their bilateral ties.
In Latin America, Xi is set to pay state visits to Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba. He will also attend the sixth BRICS Summit and the China-Latin America and the Caribbean Summit in Brazil.