News / Asia

US Concerned About Crackdown in China as Talks Begin

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks during the third annual U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED) at the Department of the Interior in Washington May 9, 2011.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks during the third annual U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED) at the Department of the Interior in Washington May 9, 2011.
William Ide

At the start of two days of high-level talks between the United States and China, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both voiced concern to Chinese authorities about China's human rights record and an ongoing crackdown in the country.

Human rights is just one of a broad range of issues U.S. and Chinese officials will discuss at this year's round of Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington, as they try to work through areas where their interests diverge and areas of cooperation for the world's two largest economies.

Discussing differences

In opening remarks at the talks, both U.S. and Chinese officials stressed the importance of building cooperation and weathering disagreements when they arise.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the annual talks give the U.S. and China an opportunity to discuss their differences like any two friends would - honestly and directly.

"We have made very clear, publicly and privately, our concern about human rights. We worry about the impact on our domestic politics and on the politics and the stability in China and the region," Clinton said.

Watch a related report by Mil Arcega


Vice President Joe Biden says that while U.S. statements about human rights may, as he put it, "rankle" some in China, it is an issue that still needs to be discussed.

"We've noted our concerns about the recent crackdown in China, including attacks, arrests and the disappearance of journalists, lawyers, bloggers and artists," Biden said. "And again, no relationship that is real can be based on false foundation. Where we disagree, its important to state it."

Some in the U.S. do not believe the U.S.-China strategic and economic dialogue will yield successful results. One of them is Clyde Prestowitz, President of the Washington based Economic Strategy Institute. Prestowitz, who served in the Reagan Administration, tells VOA's Ira Mellman the United States is taking the wrong approach.

Crackdown

In recent months, China has launched its largest clampdown on dissent in years. The crackdown comes as a wave of protests in the Middle East led to the toppling of governments in Tunisia and Egypt and unrest in several other countries.

In his remarks Monday, China's State Councilor Dai Bingguo said that China was making progress on human rights and urged Americans to visit China to understand it better.

Dai says that by visiting China, Americans can experience first-hand the enormous progress China has made in various fields, including human rights, and get to know what he called the "real China."

Market access

At this year's meeting, the third such dialogue between the United States and China since President Obama came to office, the two countries are trying to tackle disagreements over market access, and make more progress on efforts to rebalance the global economy and stabilze economic growth.

China wants more access for its companies in the U.S. market and for Washington to relax restrictions on the export of American-made high-tech goods.  U.S. officials say China's lax intellectual property enforcement and policies are making it increasingly difficult for American and other foreign companies to compete.

"Now more than ever, with two years of dialogue behind us, success depends on our ability to translate good words into concrete actions, on the issues that matter most to our people," Clinton said.

Export-driven economy

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says that in the wake of the global financial crisis, both the U.S. and Chinese economy have grown stronger as they have worked together to address their individual challenges.

In China he says, that challenge is moving from an export driven economy to one that focuses more on domestic demand and implementing a flexible, market-driven exchange rate and more open economy. For the U.S., he says, the challenge is addressing problems such as high unemployment and  promoting education and innovation as it addresses long term fiscal reforms.

"The reforms that we must both pursue to meet these very different challenges are not in conflict and the strengths of our economies are still largely complementary," Geithner said. "And we each recognize that our ability to work together is important to the overall health and stability of the global economy."

Range of issues

The strategic track of the talks will focus on global issues such as cooperation in addressing the North Korea and Iran nuclear issue, efforts to cooperate on climate change as well as military to military ties.

For the first time, this year's dialogue will include a range of military officials from both sides. Following Monday's economic and strategic track talks, the co-chairs of the meeting, Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan and State Councilor Dai, will meet with President Obama this evening at the White House.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches 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.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid