Premier Li Keqiang samples a local snack after arriving in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on Nov 2, 2016 as part of an eight-day trip that also will include Kazakhstan, Latvia and Russia.[Photo/Xinhua]
China and Kyrgyzstan vowed on Nov 2 to fight terrorism, separatism and extremism through strengthened security cooperation as Premier Li Keqiang paid his first visit to the Central Asian neighbor.
In the capital, Bishkek, Premier Li and Kyrgyz Prime Minister Sooronbay Jeenbekov signed a joint communique on bilateral cooperation in fields such as security, agriculture and production.
The agreement is especially timely since the Chinese embassy in Kyrgyzstan was attacked by a suicide car bomber on the morning of Aug 30. The attack injured three embassy personnel.
Premier Li rushed to the embassy upon his arrival in Bishkek, and said the embassy should rebuild damaged buildings as soon as possible. Security should be reinforced for Chinese diplomatic missions, Premier Li said.
Such agreements are also key for Central Asian countries such as Kyrgyzstan, which have been victims of terrorism, separatism and extremism. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization, with both countries as founding members, has fought these forces since 2001.
Both countries have been part of joint anti-terrorism drills under the SCO framework each year.
Xing Guangcheng, an expert on Central Asia and Russian studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, suggested boosting two-way information sharing.
Security cooperation is the best way to fight terrorism, a cross-border problem in Central Asia, said Xu Tao, an expert on Central Asia studies at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations.
Xu said both countries can increase exchanges in intelligence, technology and policy coordination to fight terror. “China and Kyrgyzstan have maintained political trust as strategic partners and have promoted pragmatic cooperation. ... China will do what it can to help Kyrgyzstan,” Premier Li told his counterpart.
Premier Li will attend the 15th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the SCO on Nov 3 in Bishkek.