Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived at Rhodes airport, Greece, shortly before 2 p.m. on Sunday. He will be spending the night on the island before leaving for Brazil on Monday to participate in the BRICS summit (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).
The Chinese President was welcomed by Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, while increased security measures have been taken at the airport and all over the island.
The Chinese President was then transferred to a downtown hotel where he will be staying and President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias, who arrived on the island for this purpose, hosted a luncheon.
The Greek economy is improving steadily, said Xi, adding that China is willing to continue to do everything within its capacity to support Greece and strengthen their mutually-beneficial cooperation, so as to push forward the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.
On his part, Antonis Samaras said that China is a good friend and partner of Greece and the Greek government and people are pleased to receive President Xi. He wished Xi’s next visit to Latin America a complete success.
In the afternoon, according to the programme, Jinping will visit the Castle of the Knights and tour the Medieval City with Samaras as his guide.
Despite the fact that Jinping’s visit is a private one, it has a symbolic significance and issues are expected to be discussed during the meetings concerning the widening of economic cooperation between the two countries, as it constitutes promotion of Greek tourism and encouragement by the Chinese President for citizens of his country to visit Greece.
The Chinese President is expected to leave Rhodes on Monday morning.