News / Asia

Obama, Xi Jinping Pledge Strengthened Ties, Candor

President Barack Obama meets with Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, February, 14, 2012, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.
President Barack Obama meets with Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, February, 14, 2012, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.

China's vice president, Xi Jinping, has met with President Barack Obama at the White House. Obama and China's next president pledged to keep working to strengthen bilateral relations, but also to speak candidly about key differences.

It was the first White House visit for Vice President Xi Jinping, who is expected to become head of China's Communist Party Central Committee this year, and next year replace President Hu Jintao.

With the Chinese leader seated to his right, President Barack Obama said a cooperative U.S.-China relationship is in the interests of the world, adding that China's rise brings with it greater responsibility.

"I have always emphasized that we welcome China's peaceful rise, that we believe that a strong and prosperous China is one that can help to bring stability and prosperity to the region and to the world, and we expect to be able to continue on the cooperative track that we tried to establish over the last three years," said Obama.

Kent Klein's report:

Obama referred to existing strategic and economic dialogues he said have enabled both countries to manage areas of tension. Cooperation, he said, included work in the G20 to manage the global economic crisis, and issues such as North Korea and Iran.

"The main purpose of my visit is to implement the important agreement you had reached with President Hu Jintao and to do some work to move forward the U.S.-China relationship in the right direction set by you and President Hu, that is for our two countries to work together to build a cooperative relationship based on mutual respect and mutual interests," said Vice President Xi, in the polite diplomatic terminology often heard from Chinese officials.

Earlier, Vice President Joe Biden, Xi's formal host for his week-long visit, called the ability of both sides to speak candidly about differences and make progress in bridging them a "sign of the strength and maturity of the relationship."

Outside the White House, protesters demonstrated on a range of issues, including human rights and Tibet, and China's military and Taiwan policies.

The protesters were addressed at one point by Geng He, wife of Gao Zhisheng one of China's most prominent human-rights lawyers who disapeared nearly two years ago.  Geng, who was testifying on Capitol Hill later in the day, spoke with VOA.

"Gao Zhisheng is not alone," he said. "There are many, many victims of violation of human rights in China and I [am] standing here as a vivid example of the human-rights situation in China."

In his remarks with Vice President Xi, President Obama mentioned human rights, saying the United States will continue to emphasize "the importance of recognizing the aspirations and rights of all people."

Obama, who has vowed to take a tougher line against unfair trade practices by China, said with China's expanding power, prosperity and increased responsibilities, come a need to work together to ensure that "everybody is working by the same rules of the road."

Vice President Xi also visited the State Department, and the Pentagon for talks with U.S. military officials. On Wednesday, he meets with U.S. congressional leaders before flying to the state of Iowa.

You May Like

Video Russia’s Syrian Escalation Tests Obama’s Crisis Response

Critics once again question whether president has been slow to act on Syrian conflict, thus creating opening for powers like Russia More

Ancient African DNA Shows Mass Migration Back Into Africa

First genetic analysis of ancient human remains in Africa suggests massive migration from north around time of Egyptian empire More

NASA: Pluto Has Blue Sky

New photos also reveal the presence of water ice More

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugeesi
Henry Ridgwell
October 08, 2015 8:02 PM
Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

Video Nano-tech Filter Cleans Dirty Water

Access to clean water is a problem for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Now, a scientist and chemical engineer in Tanzania (in East Africa) is working to change that by creating an innovative water filter that makes dirty water safe. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.

Video Demand Rising for Organic Produce in Cambodia

In Cambodia, where rice has long been the main cash crop, farmers are being encouraged to turn to vegetables to satisfy the growing demand for locally produced organic farm products. Daniel de Carteret has more from Phnom Penh.

Video Botanists Grow Furniture, with Pruning Shears

For something a bit out of the ordinary to furnish your home, why not consider wooden chairs, crafted by nature, with a little help from some British botanists with an eye for design. VOA’s Jessica Berman reports.

VOA Blogs