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Rajnath leaves for China; security cooperation on agenda

New Delhi: Marking the first Home Ministerial visit in a decade, Rajnath Singh today left for China where he will meet Premier Li Keqiang and hold talks with his counterpart on security cooperation and checking smuggling of arms to the Northeast insurgents.

“I am looking forward to my visit to China. Hope it would help in deepening of mutual understanding and trust,” he said before embarking on the six-day trip.

“During my China visit I intend to further strengthen the tradition of mutual learning and better understanding from each other,” he said in a statement here.

During his visit, Singh will call on Premier Li and hold bilateral talks with Guo Shengkun, State Councillor and Minister, Ministry of Public Security in Beijing followed by the signing of a joint statement. He may also call on Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Singh will hold a meeting with Meng Jianzhu, Secretary of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission of the Communist Party of China and visit a Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Unit besides a local Police Station on Friday.

Besides issues relating to terrorism, Singh’s talks are expected to crystallise security cooperation between the two countries including more effective crackdown by China in checking arms supplies to militant groups in Northeastern states.

The Home Minister’s visit comes in the backdrop of steady improvement of relations between the two countries while streamlining mechanisms to address the vexed border dispute.

Shivraj Patil was the last Home Minister who had visited China in 2005.

During his visit, Singh, the second highest ranking Indian leader after Prime Minister Narendra Modi to visit China in May this year, would spend three days in Beijing followed by a three-day stay in Shanghai.