BEIJING, June 9 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday held phone talks with his South African counterpart, Cyril Ramaphosa, pledging to promote China-South Africa ties, and calling for favorable conditions to solve the Ukraine crisis.
Xi said China and South Africa are both important major developing countries and the two enjoy special friendly relations like brothers.
China-South Africa relations are of important strategic significance to safeguarding the common interests of developing countries and guiding China-Africa solidarity and cooperation, Xi said.
He said this year marks the "Year of South Africa" for BRICS, and the development of bilateral relations is facing important opportunities.
China is ready to work with South Africa to upgrade bilateral relations, build a high-level China-South Africa community with a shared future, jointly practice genuine multilateralism, safeguard the common interests of developing countries, and make the international order more just and equitable.
China, Xi said, supports South Africa, as the rotating chair, in successfully hosting various BRICS cooperation activities this year.
South Africa highly cherishes and is deeply proud of the strong and high-level strategic partnership with China, Ramaphosa said.
Cooperation between the two countries benefits Africa, he said, adding that South Africa is committed to working with China to promote the continuous development of South Africa-China relations.
South Africa will deepen communication and coordination with China and other BRICS members to strengthen BRICS cooperation, Ramaphosa added.
The two sides also exchanged views on the Ukraine crisis.
Ramaphosa said that South Africa supports China's position paper on the political settlement of the Ukraine crisis and hopes that relevant parties could resume negotiations at an early date.
A peace delegation consisting of leaders of six African countries, including South Africa, will visit Russia and Ukraine to push for an end to the crisis as soon as possible, he added.
Xi told Ramaphosa that China's position on the Ukraine crisis has been consistent, which is to promote peace talks.
The Chinese leader said that he hopes all parties will build up favorable conditions for solving the crisis through dialogue, adding that it is a good thing that President Ramaphosa and leaders of relevant African countries formed a peace delegation to visit Russia and Ukraine.
It is also hoped that peace-loving countries worldwide which uphold justice can make a rational voice to promote peace talks, Xi said. ■