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Hu holds official talks with Obama on bilateral ties

CHINESE President Hu Jintao and visiting US President Barack Obama started official talks in Beijing this morning to discuss bilateral ties and global issues of mutual concern.

The official talks were held at the Great Hall of the People after a close-door meeting between the two presidents.

Obama told Hu said at the meeting of senior government officials that more people-to-people exchanges between the US and China would lead to greater cooperation on economic and security issues.

Obama said that the American people were interested in stronger relations with the people of China.

"The more that we can encourage people to people exchanges that are consistent with the discussions that we're having at the government level, the more that China and the United States will be able to work cooperatively on a whole range of issues -- both economic issues, security issues and global issues -- that are in the interests not just of our two nations, but the entire world," said Obama, who is on his first state visit to China on November 15-18 as guest of Hu. He started the visit on Sunday in Shanghai.

Obama told Hu that the smaller group discussions between the two leaders before the formal talks were very constructive.

"As we both affirmed, the United States and China have a great many mutual interests, and after 30 years of bilateral relations, I think it's fair to say that our two governments have continued to move forward in a way that can bring even greater cooperation in the future," Obama said.

The official talk is the third meeting between Hu and Obama this year following one in London in April and another in New York in September.


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