News / USA

Chinese President Arrives in US for State Visit

Chinese President Hu Jintao, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, waves during the arrival ceremony, Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2011, at Andrews Air Force Base, outside Washington.
Chinese President Hu Jintao, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, waves during the arrival ceremony, Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2011, at Andrews Air Force Base, outside Washington.
Kent Klein

China’s President Hu Jintao has arrived in Washington for a state visit.  Obama administration officials say they will not avoid difficult issues in meetings with Mr. Hu.  

President Hu’s two-day visit includes two dinners with President Barack Obama.  Wednesday’s state dinner is the first for a Chinese leader at the White House in 13 years and only the third in Mr. Obama’s two years in office.

A private working dinner, shortly after Mr. Hu’s arrival on Tuesday, was expected to include Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, National Security Adviser Tom Donilon and Chinese aides.

After a formal arrival ceremony Wednesday morning, the two presidents will continue their talks, with a one-on-one meeting and an expanded meeting that includes advisers.

Both sides are emphasizing their desire for cooperation.  White House spokesman Robert Gibbs calls the relationship between the two countries "cooperative but competitive."

Hu Jintao's Schedule in Washington

Tuesday, Jan. 18

4 p.m.: Chinese President Hu Jintao lands at Andrews Air Force Base, outside Washington.

Wednesday, Jan. 19

9 a.m.: U.S. President Barack Obama hosts an arrival ceremony for Hu on the South Lawn of the White House.

10 a.m.: Obama holds a small meeting with Hu in the Oval Office. Obama later holds an expanded meeting with Hu in the Cabinet Room.

TBA: Obama, Hu meet for about 45 minutes with U.S. and Chinese business leaders at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.

TBA: Obama, Hu hold a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House.

1:30 p.m.: Biden hosts a lunch in honor of Hu's delegation at the State Department.

6 p.m.: Obama welcomes Hu at the North Portico of the White House for a state dinner.

Thursday, Jan. 20

Morning: Hu visits Capitol Hill, meets Republican and Democratic congressional leaders, including heads and ranking members of key committees.

Midday: Hu delivers the main public policy address of his visit at a U.S.-China Business Council forum at the Marriott Wardman Park hotel.

Afternoon: Hu departs for Chicago.

Evening: Hu attends a dinner hosted by Chicago Mayor Richard Daley.

Friday, Jan. 21

TBA: Hu participates in several Chicago events, before returning to Beijing.

He told reporters Tuesday the leaders will discuss both areas of agreement and more contentious issues. "We have a relationship, as I said, that yields substantial benefits.  At the same time, we have some direct and difficult challenges.  Most of those will be discussed [Wednesday]," he said.

Many of the issues to be discussed are economic.  The United States and China are the world’s two largest economies, and Gibbs says the U.S. will sell $100 billion in goods and services to China this year.

However, the U.S. has an enormous trade deficit with China, and some senators are threatening higher export tariffs against Beijing.

Also, U.S. officials say China’s currency is vastly undervalued, which contributes to the trade imbalance.

Gibbs said the Chinese have taken some limited steps to revalue the yuan, but the Obama administration does not believe those efforts have been adequate. "We believe that more must be done.  That is an opinion that is held not just by this country but by many countries around the world," he said.

Steven Dunaway, an adjunct senior fellow for international economics at the Council on Foreign Relations, says the Obama administration is starting to take a harder line on the currency issue.  "I think there is increasing frustration, particularly on the exchange rate issue, with the pace at which the Chinese have advanced.  And that has been reflected, I think, in a toughening of the stance of the administration," he said.

Differences over human rights are also expected to be on the meeting agenda.

Gibbs said Mr. Obama would continue to press his Chinese counterpart to release human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo from prison, as he has since the award was given last October.

The White House spokesman said the president has discussed human rights concerns with Mr. Hu in each of their previous seven meetings.

Chinese and American human rights activists plan to protest outside the White House on Wednesday.

At Tuesday’s White House briefing, reporters repeatedly pressed Gibbs on whether an invitation to a prestigious state dinner amounts to condoning China’s human rights policies.

The president’s spokesman responded that the invitation is simply a reflection of the growing importance of the Asian economies. "This is a dynamic region of the world, one that is growing faster than any other, and one that needs to have the full engagement of the United States of America.  That has not always been the case," he said.

Mr. Obama’s other two state dinners were held for the leaders of India and Mexico.

John Boehner, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, has turned down an invitation to Wednesday’s state dinner.  A Boehner spokesman said the top Republican lawmaker would have a chance to meet with Mr. Hu when he visits Capitol Hill on Thursday.

From Washington, the Chinese president goes to Chicago to meet with business leaders.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party 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.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs