DHARAMSHALA, November 15: The 19th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit held in Honolulu, Hawaii from November 12–13 witnessed showdowns between the US and China over human rights and economic issues.
First it was US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, expressing her “deep concern” over China’s repressive policies in Tibet at the beginning of the summit.
Clinton said US was “alarmed by recent incidents in Tibet of young people lighting themselves on fire in desperate acts of protest, as well as the continued house arrest of the visually impaired Chinese lawyer Chen Guangcheng.”
Then the US President Barack Obama warned his Chinese counterpart Hu Jintao Saturday that Americans were growing “impatient and frustrated” over the two nation’s economic relations.
“What I have said since I first came into office and what we’ve exhibited in terms of our interactions with the Chinese is we want you to play by the rules. And currency is probably a good example,” said Obama at the (APEC) summit, urging the Chinese government to let the Yuan float freely.
“For an economy like the United States — where our biggest competitive advantage is our knowledge, our innovation, our patents, our copyrights — for us not to get the kind of protection we need in a large marketplace like China is not acceptable,” added Obama.
Jay Carney, the spokesman of the White House said that the US president has been very direct with the Chinese president on the trade issues.
“He made it very clear that the American people and the American business community were growing increasingly impatient and frustrated with the state of change in China economic policy and the evolution of the US-China economic relationship,” Michael Froman, senior White House aide said while speaking to reporters.
The US president also warned the Chinese government that the US would “speak out and in some cases, take action also” if rules were being broken.