China welcomes new Indian government in bid for warmer relations between Asian giants

China is welcoming the new Indian government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying it wants to strengthen the sometimes troubled relationship between the Asian giants.

State media say top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi met with India's ambassador to Beijing on Tuesday to assure him of the "high importance" China attaches to ties and its willingness to strengthen cooperation and communication.

A day earlier, Premier Li Keqiang sent Modi a message of congratulations, saying maintaining strong relations with India was a top foreign policy priority.

India and China have grown closer in recent years, although their ties remain shadowed by a territorial dispute and the legacy of a brief but bloody border war fought in 1962.

Last year, there was a 3-week stand-off between their border troops.