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Xi, Putin watch ice hockey match

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin watch an ice hockey friendly match between Chinese and Russian youth teams at the Tianjin Indoor Stadium in north China's Tianjin, June 8, 2018. Xi and Putin jointly dropped the puck to kick off the match. Before the match, the two leaders posed for group photos with the teams and talked with them. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

TIANJIN, June 8 (Xinhua) -- President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin watched an ice hockey friendly match between Chinese and Russian youth teams on Friday evening in north China's port city of Tianjin.

At the Tianjin Indoor Stadium, Xi and Putin jointly dropped the puck to kick off the match. The two leaders applauded along with more than 7,000 spectators.

Calling the exciting match a demonstration of friendship between the Chinese and Russian teens, Xi told Putin that China is willing to work with Russia on exchange and cooperation in sports such as ice hockey.

The youth of the two countries should strengthen exchanges to pass down the China-Russia good neighborliness and friendship from generation to generation, Xi said.

Putin said the performances of the two teams were excellent and the outlook for China's ice hockey was very optimistic.

Before the match, the two leaders posed for group photos with the teams and talked with them. They encouraged them to improve their skills and become good friends and partners through exchanges. The teams presented jerseys to Xi and Putin.

Xi and Putin rode a high-speed train from Beijing to Tianjin to attend the match. On the train, the two leaders witnessed the signing of bilateral cooperation documents on railways and cargo transport.

Putin is on a state visit to China. He will attend the 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in the eastern coastal city of Qingdao on Saturday and Sunday.

[ Editor: Zhang Zhou ]