France's Sarkozy denies deal to restore China ties

3rd April 2009, Comments 0 comments

French President Nicolas Sarkozy says there was no agreement with China that states he will not meet up with the Dalai Lama.

LONDON – French President Nicolas Sarkozy denied Thursday that there had been a "secret deal" by which he allegedly agreed not to meet the Dalai Lama in return for restoring top-level ties with China.

"There is no hidden agreement with China... the Chinese are extremely pragmatic, and it wouldn't occur to them to ask for things which they would not obtain," he added.

Sarkozy was speaking after meeting Chinese President Hu Jintao on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in London.

Relations between the two nations deteriorated sharply last year due to Sarkozy's meeting with the Dalai Lama, Tibet's spiritual leader, in December in Poland.

Initially Sarkozy had not been expected to meet his Chinese counterpart at the London G20 summit. But the pair eventually did hold talks on the sidelines of the meeting late Wednesday night.

AFP / Expatica

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