President Obama arrives in Beijing

November 16, 2009 | Posted by Chris

This afternoon US President Barack Obama arrived in Beijing as he continues his diplomatic tour of East Asia, Xinhua News reports. Touching down at the Beijing Capital Airport, President Obama descended from Air Force One down a large red carpet lined by dozens of Chinese soldiers and was greeted by Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping. Obama departed the airport headed for the Great Hall of the People (人民大会堂 or rénmín dàhuìtáng in Chinese), which is adjacent to Tian'anmen Square and is analogous to China's "capitol building" in that it is where political leaders meet to decide policy. At the Great Hall of the People Chinese President Hu Jintao held a welcoming ceremony for the US President and later a state dinner that also featured US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and a number of Chinese leaders. President Obama arrived in Beijing from Shanghai, where he held a town hall-style event with Chinese youths. This is Obama's first visit to China both as US President and personally, and his agenda includes high-level discussions and some sight-seeing.

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