BEIJING – China and Russia signed a pact to notify each other of ballistic missile launch plans during Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's visit this week to Beijing, Chinese media said on Wednesday.
The accord, although overshadowed by promises of $3.5 billion in deals and oil and gas supply accords, is a small step toward establishing further trust between the two countries.
"It shows the special relationship with the two countries, as the launches of ballistic missiles are core State secrets rarely disclosed to other countries," Li Daguang, a military expert at China's National Defense University, was quoted as saying by the Global Times' English edition.
The U.S. and Russia agreed in 1971, during the Cold War, to notify each other of ballistic missile launches extending beyond their territories, and expanded on that in 2000. Chinese media said on Tuesday that the Sino-Russian accord differed from the U.S.-Russian "offensive agreement," but did not elaborate.