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Chinese President Hu Jintao to visit Cambodia

Chinese President Hu Jintao will pay an official state visit to Cambodia between March 30 and April 2, a trip that will coincide with the Asean European Union Business Summit and will finish just one day before the annual Asean summit commences in Phnom Penh, an official at the Chinese Embassy said yesterday.

Mr. Hu is scheduled to arrive in Cambodia after attending a nuclear security summit in Seoul and an emerging market economic meeting in New Delhi.

“He is arriving by invitation from King [Norodom Sihamoni], and he will meet with Cambodian leaders and [members of] the Senate and Assembly,” Chinese Embassy spokesman Yang Tian Yue said. “He will come to enhance the bilateral relationship [with Cambodia] and to support cooperation between China and Asean Countries.”

Mr. Hu, who will step down as communist Party chief later this year at the end of a 10-year mandate, will visit Cambodia as hundreds of delegates from countries in the region arrive for the beginning of the 20th Asean summit. In previous visits to Cambodia, Chinese officials have used meetings with senior officials here as platforms to announce large amounts of aid and loans.

A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday said that Mr. Hu and Prime Minister Hun Sen would “preside over the Signing Ceremony of some documents,” but the ministry did not specify what those documents would consist of.

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