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China, U.S. sign new cooperative research agreement on giant pandas

01-21-2011 08:15 BJT Special Report:Chinese President Hu Jintao Visits US |

WASHINGTON, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- Officials from China and the United States on Thursday signed a new agreement to support panda breeding, research and conservation efforts by the two countries, an exciting news for numerous American fans of the cute animals.

Zang Chunlin, Secretary General of the China Wildlife Conservation Association, and Dennis Kelly, Director of the U.S. Smithsonian's National Zoo, signed the Giant Panda Cooperative Research and Breeding Agreement.

Under the agreement, a pair of giant pandas, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, will remain at the National Zoo in Washington D.C. for five more years.

Also in attendance at the signing ceremony at the National Zoo was Chen Naiqing, wife of China's Ambassador to the U.S. Zhang Yesui, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Mary Kaye Huntsman, wife of U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman.

On behalf of the Chinese embassy and Ambassador Zhang, Chen expressed appreciation to the National Zoo for taking care of these giant pandas and to all American people for their love for them.

"Although the weather is cold today, the friendship between our people keeps us warm," she said. "I am confident that through joint efforts, our cooperation will grow, our friendship will deepen, and the future will be even brighter."

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