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Obama and Xi Hold Lengthy Talks

The leaders of the United States and China talked face-to-face in Beijing. They discussed a wide range of topics, from emissions cuts to human rights issues. NHK WORLD's Takafumi Terui reports from Beijing.

US President Barack Obama held talks with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Beijing on Wednesday. Obama was in the city to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. The talks were the fourth between the two leaders since Xi took office.

Xi is eager to make China a world power equal to the US, so a meeting with Obama is a golden opportunity for him to impress the world. On Tuesday night, footage was released not only of the two leaders holding discussions, but also strolling side by side. In total, they met for ten hours.

Obama has just suffered a crushing defeat in the mid-term elections. So for Obama, too, this was a good opportunity to show his leadership and his influence.

Following the meeting, the two leaders emphasized the cooperative relationship between the United States and China.

"We should hold more dialogues to discuss issues facing the Asia-Pacific region, rather than trying to deny each other."
Xi Jinping / Chinese President

"The United States welcomes the continuing rise of the China that is peaceful, prosperous, and stable, and it plays a responsible role in the world."
Barack Obama / US President

The two leaders also announced their targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. China and the US are the world's largest polluters.

By announcing their targets together, they apparently wanted to show the world that they are willing to play a role in solving issues facing the international community.

But it was not all harmonious. They were divided over China's increasing presence in the East and South China seas and continuing protests in Hong Kong calling for democratic elections.

"We're going to consistently speak out on the rights of people to express themselves and encourage that the elections that take place in Hong Kong are transparent and fair."
Barack Obama / US President

"It is illegal to occupy the streets in Hong Kong. What's going on there is solely a domestic issue. No foreign countries should meddle."
Xi Jinping / Chinese President

The 10 hours Xi spent with the US president is about the same amount of time he spent at all APEC's meetings and other events. But of course, more time than that is needed for the two leaders to overcome their differences.

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