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China to advance ties with Uzbekistan after Karimov wins re-election

Updated: Apr 1,2015 6:53 PM     Xinhua

China expressed willingness to advance strategic relationship with Uzbekistan on April 1 following President Islam Karimov’s re-election as the head of state of the Central Asian nation.

China respects the Uzbek people’s choice and supports them to take a path that suits their own national conditions, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.

She voiced confidence that Uzbekistan would maintain political stability, economic development and play a bigger role in international affairs.

As strategic partners, China and Uzbekistan have maintained a momentum for healthy and rapid growth in the relationship. “China is willing to work with Uzbekistan to implement the consensus reached by leaders of both countries to advance bilateral ties,” she said.

President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to Karimov on Monday and congratulated him during a phone conversation on March 31.

Preliminary results showed Karimov won more than 90 percent of the votes in the country’s presidential election, the Uzbek central election commission announced on March 30.

Karimov has been the leader of the Central Asian nation for more than two decades. His new term will be five years, according to a 2011 constitutional amendment which shortens the presidential tenure from seven years.