News / Asia

In China, Michelle Obama Tours School, Forbidden City

  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama practices tai chi with students at Chengdu No.7 High School in Chengdu in southwest China's Sichuan province, March 25, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama looks at a terracotta warrior as she visits Qinshihuang Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum with her daughters, Malia and Sasha, and her mother, Marian Shields Robinson, in Xi'an, March 24, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama walks with her daughters Malia and Sasha as they visit the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China, March 23, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama speaks next to U.S. Ambassador to China Max Baucus as they attend a round table discussion on education at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, March 23, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, followed by her daughters Malia and Sasha, is greeted by Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan at the Diaoyutai State guest house in Beijing, March 21, 2014.
  • Peng Liyuan, wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping, shows U.S. first lady Michelle Obama how to hold a writing brush as they visit a Chinese traditional calligraphy class at the Beijing Normal School, March 21, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama plays table tennis at the Beijing Normal School, a school that prepares students to attend colleges overseas, March 21, 2014.
  • U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, her daughters Sasha and Malia and her mother Marian Robinson pose with Peng Liyuan, wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping, as they visit Forbidden City in Beijing, March 21, 2014.
VOA News
U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, accompanied by her Chinese counterpart, Peng Liyuan, visited a school on the first day of Obama's five-day trip to China.

The two participated in a calligraphy demonstration Friday before visiting the former Imperial Palace in Beijing's Forbidden City.

During their travels, the first lady, along with her mother and two daughters, will also visit the Great Wall of China, the famed Terra Cotta Warriors and a panda preserve.

Obama is scheduled to deliver a speech Saturday at the Stanford Center of the prestigious Peking University. She will also meet the staff and families of the American embassy in Beijing.

Watch related video by VOA's Carla Babb

First Lady's Education Trip to China Employs Soft Diplomacyi
March 21, 2014 5:03 PM
First Lady Michelle Obama is in China this week to focus on education and culture. VOA's Carla Babb has our story.

The two first ladies had been expected to meet last June when their husbands held a summit in California, but Mrs. Obama stayed behind in Washington.

White House officials have said Mrs. Obama's trip will focus on education and will steer clear of more contentious issues between the United States and China, such as human rights and trade.

Both of the first lady's predecessors have addressed contentious matters while visiting China.

During a 2008 trip, Laura Bush urged China to put more pressure on the military government of Burma. And in 1995, Hillary Clinton attended the U.N. Women's Conference in Beijing and gave a high-profile speech urging China to improve its human rights record.

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Comment Sorting
by: meanbill from: USA
March 23, 2014 7:35 PM
CRAZY isn't it? .. Michele Obama talking to the Chinese about getting an education?
FACTUAL FACTS? .. In the 2013 (OECD) test scores, the US ranked 17th out of 34 (OECD) countries in reading and science .. (AND?) .. 26th out of 34 (OECD) countries in math..
CRAZY isn't it? .. Michele Obama would push for education in China, instead of American schools, isn't it? ....... REALLY?

by: Rudy Haugeneder from: Canada
March 23, 2014 3:55 PM
Michelle Obama has no right to preach to China about Internet freedom in view of how the American NSA increasingly spies on its own Internet citizens.
This is going on in a United States with 300 million people and where laws can be expected through various new and as yet unwritten regulations to restrict free internet access -- much like China does to control its 1.3 billion people by halting the flow of ideas and information the government doesn't like.
If current trend continues, the population of the United States will rise to whopping 438 million by 2050, says the Pew Research Center. That's almost as many people that inhabited the planet at the time of Columbus. And that's an unmanageable population and means that, in less than a mere 36 years, the American government will likely no longer be able to control its population.

by: Simonzee1 from: Australia
March 22, 2014 12:18 PM
If you go to most American networks that had the closed meeting with Obama they are now exercising their right to censorship on blogging sites above free speech. Worse than Turkey. Obama has told Michelle not to talk about free speech because he is trying to isolate Russia. Obama promises he will not talk about Tibet or anything in the spirit of hypocricy. Meanwhile he tells Iranians in a video to fight for the freedom of the internet. Problem is Reporters Without Borders put the U.K and U.S on their offendors list.

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