Task forces of the Russian and Chinese navies are taking part in the international effort to remove chemical weapon components from Syria for their further annihilation. The fleet includes Russia’s heavy nuclear-powered missile cruiser Pyotr Veliky [Peter the Great] and Chinese war frigate Yancheng.
* * *
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President, my friend, dear colleagues and friends, welcome to Sochi!
I am very happy to see you, Mr President. I know you have come here when all of China is celebrating the New Year. This is a family holiday when people visit their relatives and friends. So let us look at your visit in the same way – you are visiting close friends. Thank you for being with us.
Allow me to wish you and the people of China a happy New Year, and may it bring success to all, including your team at the Olympic Games.
As for our bilateral relations, they have been on the incline, and despite the fact that they have always been very good we can see significant development.
Our trade turnover has already reached $87 billion and we are approaching the figure of $100 billion just as we planned.
Our political contacts are also developing – we have five summit meetings planned for this year. Our security services are cooperating, as well as our military, including those engaged in removing chemical weapons from Syria.
Russia and China are making a significant contribution to international development and security.
We are very happy to see you here. Welcome!
President of China Xi Jinping (translated from Russian): Mr President, I am very happy to meet with you again in Russia, in Sochi. I am very grateful to you for your invitation to take part in the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics.
As you correctly said, our country is celebrating the festival of Spring, while we are here in Sochi – and this is a major event for us, giving us double joy. There is a tradition in China: when our friend or neighbour is celebrating, we have to visit and congratulate. So, we have come here specifically to congratulate you on this wonderful event.
We also have a saying that a good mood always makes you happier. Today I can see you are very cheerful, in high spirits, and I am happy to see this.
The Winter Olympics is a major global event and the highest arena for competitions in winter sports. The sacred Olympic flame that will be lit here in Sochi is a symbol of Russia making its way towards power and prosperity under your leadership, Mr President. This is also a demonstration of Russia’s strong support for the international Olympic movement.
I am convinced that, given the careful organisation that Russia has put into them, the Sochi Olympics will be held at the highest level and will become an unforgettable international Olympic festival, an event that would contribute to the development of the international Olympic movement.
You may be aware that this year in the Chinese Lunar calendar is the Year of the Horse. For our people horses symbolise prosperity and happiness, therefore I would like to wish the Sochi Olympics good luck and success, while I wish our athletes – both Chinese and Russian — to take the lead in the competitions.