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.

    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

    Turkey, West in Standoff Over Syrian Refugees

    Turkish government refuses to admit refugees, the first in a wave of civilians fleeing offensive by Assad regime in northern Aleppo countryside

    Jailed American Testifies About Islamist Involvement in Mumbai Attacks

    David Headley testifies via video link that Pakistan-based Islamic terror group made two failed attempts to mount strikes in Mumbai in months prior to coordinated assault

    These Are the 10 Smartest US States

    A new report breaks down the nation's best and brightest

    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.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.