Clinton Wraps Trip By Urging China's Investment Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrapped up her first overseas tour by attending a church service in the Chinese capital and meeting with women's leaders Sunday. She also suggested that by buying more U.S. treasury bonds, China would be helping its own economy.
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Clinton Wraps Trip By Urging China's Investment

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Clinton Wraps Trip By Urging China's Investment

Clinton Wraps Trip By Urging China's Investment

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LIANE HANSEN, Host:

NPR's Anthony Kuhn has been following the visit from Beijing. He joins us now. Anthony, Secretary of State Clinton put the economy, I mean, right - front and center on this trip. So, how does she actually propose to work with the Chinese on this?

ANTHONY KUHN: And then, also, the Chinese and U.S. economies are increasingly intertwined, and the fact that China has all these investments in U.S. government debt are a recognition of this fact. She reassured Beijing that all these Treasury bonds are safe, and that the U.S. has a well-earned reputation for financial stability. Chinese are mostly saying, well, we thought so, too, until this financial crisis.

HANSEN: Did she talk a lot or anything about the green economy, which is concerning a lot of world leaders now?

KUHN: And essentially, she was trying to move away from the sort of zero-sum game of saying, well, the U.S. can't cut its emissions unless China does, also. If China cuts - if the U.S. cuts its emissions and China doesn't, then we won't get anywhere anyway. So, she was trying to move that forward and, I believe, take a different approach to the issue of climate change.

HANSEN: What about the issue of human rights? If that was looked at as sort of something that might derail other conversations, was the issue avoided completely, or did the secretary approach it in a different way?

KUHN: Now, let's listen to a clip of Secretary Clinton speaking to the women's forum.

HANSEN: I think that change really does come from individual decisions, many millions of individual decisions where, you know, someone stands up, like, you know, Dr. Gao and says, no, I'm not going to be quiet.

HANSEN: Was Secretary Clinton, do you think, successful in her grassroots approach rather than the traditional diplomatic approach?

KUHN: Then, at this women's event, you could say that she was sort of reprising her role as the first lady. These were women's activists who she had met here in previous visits in 1995 - the World Women's Forum - and on her visit with then- President Clinton in 1998.

HANSEN: How did the Chinese react to this visit?

KUHN: Actually, I think a lot of Chinese people were not that unhappy with ties between the U.S. and China under President Bush, and they're not expecting a sea change from the Obama administration. They perfectly well expect the Obama administration to pursue American interests, but perhaps in a smarter and more tactful way.

HANSEN: NPR's Anthony Kuhn in Beijing. Anthony, thank you very much.

KUHN: Thank you.

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