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Xi to hold in-depth talks in US

By Zhou Wa (China Daily)

12:55, February 09, 2012

Vice-president to receive memento of father's stateside trip in 1980

BEIJING - Chinese and US leaders expect positive and practical results from Vice-President Xi Jinping's trip to the US next week.

The trip will seek to implement the important consensus reached by Chinese and US leaders to promote the establishment of a Sino-US cooperative partnership on the basis of mutual respect and reciprocity, Xi told US Vice-President Joe Biden on the telephone on Tuesday, according to the Foreign Ministry.

Xi said he is looking forward to conducting comprehensive and in-depth discussions with US officials on bilateral ties and other major issues to consolidate the consensus, and sending positive signals on strengthening Sino-US relations with Washington.

Xi told Biden that he hopes to reach a broad range of people in the US, to promote mutual understanding and deepen the friendship between the two countries.

Biden said that he and US President Barack Obama attach great importance to Xi's visit and expect that the two sides can have in-depth talks on bilateral relations and other major issues of common concern.

Sino-US ties are extremely significant not only for the two countries, but also for the peace and development of the whole world, Biden said.

The US State Department announced earlier that Xi's visit will include stops in California and Iowa.

Xi will meet Obama in Washington on Feb 14, the White House announced.

The US would like to get to know Xi in person and build positive relations with him, said Da Wei, an expert on US studies with China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations.

Xi will receive an unusual gift on his visit from the US side - an album of photographs taken during his father's only visit to the US in 1980, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) said on its blog.

The photos show his father, former Vice-Premier Xi Zhongxun, leading a delegation of provincial leaders on a tour of New York, Washington, Iowa, Colorado, California and Hawaii, according to the National Committee on United States-China Relations, which organized that trip and will present the album.

One photo shows the elder Xi wearing a flower garland in Hawaii, the WSJ quoted Jan Berris, the committee's vice-president, who accompanied the delegation on the trip in 1980, as saying.

The committee's photographs will foster closer ties between Xi and the US, but the personal issue will have limited influence on the Sino-US ties in the future, analysts said.

"Washington often plays up foreign leaders' personal experiences with the US to build closer ties," said Da.

The photographs are the latest evidence of the relatively strong links between Xi's family and the West.

"Those links offered him a good opportunity to know the US in his early years," said Da.

"But the key issues for Sino-US ties remain cooperation and how to solve disputes between the two sides."

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