News / Asia

Chinese Leader Wraps Up US Visit

Chinese President Hu Jintao, second from right, and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, right, visit a classroom at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School in Chicago, 12 Jan 2011
Chinese President Hu Jintao, second from right, and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, right, visit a classroom at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School in Chicago, 12 Jan 2011

Chinese President Hu Jintao wrapped his four-day visit to the United States Friday in the central U.S. city of Chicago, where he visited a school that offers an intensive Chinese culture and language program.  

Students from a local elementary school welcomed Mr. Hu to Walter Payton College Prep with a traditional Chinese handkerchief dance.  

It was one of the final events before Mr. Hu boarded a plane back to China Friday afternoon, and, perhaps in some ways, the dance number embodied the four-day state visit.  

James Mann is a China scholar and author-in-residence at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, D.C.  "The summit was important simply for the ceremony.  I'm not sure what sort of results it produced," he said.

It was a visit with plenty of pomp.  Mr. Hu's trip included a meeting with President Barack Obama, a state dinner at the White House, meetings with Congressional leaders, and speeches to business executives in both Chicago and Washington.  China's flag flew alongside U.S. ones on a main thoroughfare leading to the Capitol building, and officials announced that pandas on loan to the National Zoo in Washington could stay another five years.   

But there was serious business, as well.  China signed deals that could be worth more than $45 billion in increased exports.  And human rights advocates praised the Obama administration for directly addressing China's human rights record.  

At a press conference with Mr. Obama Wednesday, Mr. Hu said China has made "enormous progress" in the field of human rights, but he also conceded that "a lot still needs to be done."

Mann, who authored the book "The China Fantasy: How Our Leaders Explain Away Chinese Repression," said he thinks too much is being made of those particular comments.  "I didn't find that they had changed that much or that the language was that significant," he said.

Mann does think that the treatment Mr. Hu received will help the Chinese president's standing at home, but he cautioned against thinking that Mr. Hu's reputation depended upon his reception in the U.S.  

"The United States is very important to China, more important than other countries, but still doesn't really determine leadership issues that are really decided within China and within the Chinese Communist party," he said.

Overall, both the U.S. and Chinese sides emphasized the importance of strengthening bilateral relations, while highlighting the desire for greater trust and cooperation.  A spokesman in China's Foreign Ministry told reporters in Beijing Thursday that the visit to Washington was "fruitful" and would undoubtedly boost ties between the two nations.   

And, while in Mr. Obama's hometown of Chicago, as cameras snapped and students stared in rapt attention, Mr. Hu said he hopes the two nations can continue to exist in harmony.  

He said that the U.S. and China have two different systems, but the people of both countries share a desire for prosperity and peace.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
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.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid