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ap09111702267On the subject of a one-China policy, visiting US President Barack Obama, who is in Beijing on his maiden state visit to the Communist nation, on Tuesday expressed his support for the early continuation of talks between the Chinese leaders and representatives of the Tibetan spiritual and political leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

"While we recognize that Tibet is part of the People's Republic of China, the United States supports the early resumption of dialogue between the Chinese government and representatives of the Dalai Lama to resolve any concerns and differences that the two sides may have." Obama said after meeting with his Chinese counterpart Hu Jintao in Beijing.


The last formal talks between His Holiness the Dalai Lama's envoys and Chinese officials, the eighth since 2002, ended in an impasse in July last year, with China demanding that His Holiness prove he did not support Tibetan independence.

Mr. Obama met with President Hu Jintao on Tuesday for their second round of private talks in two days. A senior White House official said Mr. Obama broached the topic human rights, encouraging the Chinese government to resume China-Tibet talks with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who is considered to be a separatist by Beijing.

China, which has controlled Tibet since its so-called People's Liberation Army first occupied the nation in the 1950s, has repeatedly accused His Holiness the Dalai Lama of leading a campaign to split the Himalayan region from the rest of the country.

Relations have been particularly tense this year after deadly crackdowns on Tibetans in all parts of Tibet including the capital city Lhasa, where several hundreds of Tibetans were either arrested, killed, or simply disappeared.

The talks also focused on "re-balancing" the global economy, with Mr. Obama pushing China to bolster domestic consumption and become less reliant on exports to the U.S., and on issues of freedom of speech.  President Obama declared himself to be “a supporter of open internet use” and “non-censorship,” and has urged the Chinese government to allow greater openness and freedom of expression.

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