BEIJING, March 17 (UPI) -- China officially has elevated its diplomatic relationship with Britain to show its commitment to a strategic partnership, Chinese leaders said.
Talks held Tuesday in Beijing with British Foreign Secretary David Miliband were chaired by Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo, China's official Xinhua news agency reported Wednesday. Such talks previously were held at the vice foreign minister level.
"Elevating the strategic dialogue mechanism is a meaningful event," Dai said, noting it would enable Britain and China to deepen their mutual respect and promote bilateral relations.
Miliband, in turn, said he hoped Britain and China could increase cooperation on issues of climate change, the economy and security. Britain and China share broad common interests and face common challenges, Miliband said.
The elevated diplomatic relationship would take the two nations' "political cooperation to a new level," Miliband said.