ATHENS -- The Center of Chinese and Greek Ancient Civilizations was inaugurated here on Monday. Chinese Vice Premier Sun Chunlan attended the ceremony, read a reply letter from Chinese President Xi Jinping to five Greek scholars, and gave a speech.
Xi's reply letter spoke highly of the great significance of establishing the center, and once again advocated strengthening exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations, Sun said, adding that Xi has called for making good use of the essence of all civilizations, and resolving outstanding contradictions and problems faced by human civilization.
It will surely guide the symbiosis of multiple civilizations under changed global situation and promote the building of a human community with a shared future, said Sun.
The joint establishment of the center by the universities of the two countries is a landmark achievement in the development of bilateral relations and exchanges among world civilizations, Sun said.
Sun said the two sides should take the establishment of the center as a new opportunity to promote broader and deeper exchanges and mutual understanding between the two ancient civilizations, and create a model of mutual understanding and learning among different civilizations.
On behalf of the Greek government, Greek Deputy Prime Minister Panagiotis Pikrammenos on the occasion congratulated the establishment of the center, adding that Greece is looking forward to strengthening the comparative study between the two great ancient civilizations, tightening ties between students and scholars of the two countries, promoting better understanding between their people, and facilitating the development of practical cooperation in various fields.
After the inauguration ceremony, Sun met with the five Greek scholars who jointly sent a letter to Xi and handed Xi's reply letter to them.
Excited by receiving the reply, the Greek scholars said that they would devote themselves to the exchange of civilizations between Greece and China and contribute to the development of the center.
The universities which jointly established the center held the first summit meeting of Chinese and Greek civilizations in dialogue after the ceremony.
On the same day, Sun met with the speaker of Hellenic Parliament Konstantinos Tasoulas, introduced the spirit of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, and raised expectations for future cooperation between China and Greece.
Sun also held talks on Monday with Pikrammenos on China-Greece relations and deepening mutual learning between Chinese and Greek civilizations and witnessed the signing of three cooperation agreements including on education and sports.