President Barack Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed this week to work together to tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues, including global warming, nuclear disarmament and human rights.
Although the two presidents met in Beijing for two hours of discussion and a separate meeting over dinner, they emerged from their meetings with “scant progress beyond goodwill,” according to www.msnbc.com.
During a joint media event, Obama and Hu addressed the importance of the United States and China working together. “The major challenges of the 21st century, from climate change to nuclear proliferation to economic recovery, are challenges that touch both our nations, and challenges that neither of our nations can solve by acting alone,” Obama said.
Leon Li, an international student from China, supports the collaboration of the U.S. and China.
“I think it would be great for these two big countries to work together. Both the U.S. and China are two very powerful countries in the world that are able to change the history of the human being,” Li said. “It’s definitely beneficial for both countries if they can work together.”
On the topic of global warming, according to www.bbc.com, China is the world’s biggest producer of greenhouse gases at 20.7 percent of the world’s emissions, followed by the U.S. at 15.5 percent. As a result, Obama and Hu’s conclusion was that if the world is going to fight against climate change, next month’s global leaders meeting at Copenhagen will require a comprehensive global deal and not just a political statement.
Obama also raised the issue of human rights as fundamental for all: “We do not believe these principles are unique to America, but rather they are universal rights and that they should be available to all peoples, to all ethnic and religious minorities.” According to www.msnbc.com, the two leaders decided that by early next year, they will resume an “on-again, off-again dialogue on human rights.”
The presidents also discussed the tension regarding Tibet, the trade system between the U.S. and China and the two countries’ space programs. Promises were made to step up visits by military leaders to help overcome years of distrust over a Chinese military buildup and U.S. investigative missions in the seas off China.