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AKIPRESS.COM - Pledging 100 billion yuan in financing, Chinese President Xi Jinping called Sunday for closer cooperation across Asia and Europe in areas from anti-terrorism to investment as leaders from 29 countries gathered to promote a Chinese initiative that could increase Beijing's global influence.
The "Belt and Road Initiative" calls for building ports, railways and other facilities in a vast arc of 65 countries. Other countries welcome the investment, but governments including the United States, Russia and India have expressed unease that Beijing also might be using the effort to increase its political stature.
Speaking before an audience that included Russian President Vladimir Putin, Xi said his government has "no desire to impose our will on others." But he called for "economic integration" and cooperation on financial regulation, anti-terrorism and security - fields in which China's heft as the world's No. 2 economy would make it a dominant player.
"We should foster a vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security," said Xi. He called for stepped-up action against terrorism and what he called its root causes of poverty and social injustice.