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Russian President Dmitry Medvedev told a group of Chinese students
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev told a group of Chinese students in Beijing on Saturday that the two countries' universities are the key to creating innovative economies.

The president, who assumed office on May 7, is on the second day of his official visit to China.

Medvedev told students at Peking University: "Both China and Russia face these new challenges: to embrace new technologies, and turn their economies into modern, innovative, knowledge-base economies. The work of our universities is a key element of this."

He said that universities have always been "the main hubs of civilization's development," and that this will continue to be true.

Peking University, known as Beida, is China's second oldest university and one of the country's most selective. In English, the university retains the old name for Beijing.

Medvedev began the second day of his visit to China by visiting a monument on Tiananmen Square, and later met with the chairman of the National People's Congress.

He laid a wreath at the Monument to the People's Heroes, built in the 1950s to commemorate those who died defending China in the 19th and 20th centuries.

During his meeting with National People's Congress Chairman Wu Bangguo, the president expressed his condolences to the Chinese people over the May 12 earthquake in the Sichuan province, which has claimed between 60,000 and 80,000 lives.


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