32 captures
19 Jan 2011 - 25 Jan 2021
About this capture
18 January 2011 Last updated at 20:36 ET
Obama hosts China's Hu at rare private White House meal
Chinese President Hu Jintao acknowledged "differences and sensitive issues" with the US
Hu Jintao in Washington
China 'mistaken over US decline'
What each side wants from talks
New US-Sino high-tech arms race?
US response to China stealth jet
Chinese President Hu Jintao has kicked off a four-day US visit with a rare private dinner at the White House with President Barack Obama.
Analysts say Mr Hu's visit is the most important by a Chinese leader in 30 years given China's growing military, economic and diplomatic clout.
Relations have been strained on issues from currency controls and trade disputes to human rights and Taiwan.
Talks are also expected to include North Korea's nuclear activities.
Mr Hu stepped off a jet plane to a show of pomp at Andrews Air Force base outside Washington on Tuesday, greeted by US Vice-President Joseph Biden.
In the US capital, meanwhile, raucous demonstrators protesting against China's Tibet policies gathered in front of the White House, waving signs and flags and chanting slogans.
Workers hung US and Chinese flags along Pennsylvania Avenue, one of Washington DC's chief arteries, which runs between the White House and the Capitol building where Congress sits.
Tuesday's dinner will be followed on Wednesday by talks in the Oval Office, during which White House aides pledged the US president would engage his counterpart on the top issues facing the two nations.
Hu Jintao's Itinerary
18 Jan: Arrives in Washington, has private dinner with US President Barack Obama
19 Jan: Series of bilateral meetings followed by joint press conference; lunch with Vice-President Joe Biden; formal state dinner
20 Jan: Visits Capitol Hill to meet congressional leaders; departs for Chicago
21 Jan: Leaves Chicago for Beijing
What China and the US want from visit
In pictures: Chinese state visits to US
"Whether we're dealing with economic discussions, whether we're dealing with those in the security realm, or whether we're doing those with human rights, I think this is an argument that we have and we'll continue to make to the Chinese and push them to do better," spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters.
On Wednesday evening Mr Obama will host an opulent state dinner.
Later in the week, Mr Hu is expected to travel to Chicago, where some predict he will sign a series of trade and investment agreements.
China's foreign ministry called Mr Hu's visit "an important one".
"We hope the visit will promote positive and co-operative China-US relations, map out new directions for bilateral relations in the new era and raise co-operation to a new level," said spokesman Hong Lei.
There are countless ways of characterising the relationship between these two nations, but almost every one is animated by the idea that we are witnessing an historic shift”
Damian Grammaticas
Grammaticas: Powerplays and mistrust
This is likely to be Mr Hu's last state visit to the US before a handover of power is completed in China in 2013.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that America and China are "at a critical juncture, a time when the choices we make, big and small, will shape the trajectory of this relationship".
Both sides recognise the deep divisions that have dogged relations over the past year: the value of the yuan, the huge trade gap, human rights, US arms sales to Taiwan.
The US is also concerned by China's growing military strength.
Earlier this month, during a trip to China by US Defence Secretary Robert Gates, Beijing confirmed that it had tested a prototype J-20 stealth fighter, invisible to radar.
The US has also bolstered its support for its East Asian allies, most notably South Korea and Japan amid maritime rivalries with China in the Pacific.
The two powers have also been at loggerheads over how to curb North Korea's belligerent behaviour and advancement of its nuclear programme.
In a rare interview with foreign media, Mr Hu acknowledged the "differences and sensitive issues", but said co-operation rather than confrontation would serve both sides best.
Ahead of Mr Hu's arrival in the US, a Chinese trade mission signed six deals with US companies in Houston worth $600m (£376m) - which analysts say is an attempt to create a "positive" atmosphere for the talks.
The relationship will remain difficult as long as the Chinese suffer from hubris based on a mistaken belief in American decline”
Joseph Nye
Professor at Harvard University
China 'mistaken over US decline'
Send your comments
Trade between the US and China is worth $400bn, up from $100m 30 years ago, when the US formalised relations with the communist state.
The US is also encouraging China to buy tens of billions of dollars of aircraft from Boeing, car parts, agricultural goods and beef.
A series of deals on bilateral trade, energy, environmental protection, infrastructure building, and cultural exchanges are expected to be signed during the visit, Chinese state media reported.
Meanwhile, US senators have been pressing Congress to penalise Beijing for "manipulating" its currency.
They say it is important to punish China if it does not allow the yuan to rise in value rather than manage its exchange rate - making Chinese products cheaper in the US and raising the price of US goods in China.
Mr Hu earlier said the yuan was not undervalued, and that China had adopted a "managed floating exchange rate regime" determined by the balance of international payments and supply and demand.
He also questioned the role of the US dollar as the world's reserve currency and criticised US monetary policy, saying that by keeping interest rates low, the Federal Reserve was devaluing the dollar and creating inflation elsewhere.
Members of Congress have also highlighted China's human rights record.
What do you think of Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to the US? What do you expect to come of his trip? How important is the visit?
Your E-mail address
Town & Country
Your telephone number
In most cases a selection of your comments will be published, displaying your name as you provide it and location unless you state otherwise. But your contact details will never be published. When sending us pictures, video or eyewitness accounts at no time should you endanger yourself or others, take any unnecessary risks or infringe any laws.
Terms and conditions
More on This Story
Hu Jintao in Washington
China 'mistaken over US decline'
Harvard professor Joseph Nye looks at how US-China relations have evolved during the Obama administration.
What each side wants from talks
New US-Sino high-tech arms race?
US response to China stealth jet
US to expand Asia military role
Economic issues
What's the currency war about?
China questions currency system
2011: A year of economic risks
Seeking remedy for rising prices
China's leadership
How China is ruled
China's leaders-in-waiting?
From other news sites
Sky News
Hu's The Daddy?
6 hrs ago
Asian Age
China's Hu heads to United States
8 hrs ago
About these results
Related Internet links
The White House
Chinese government
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites
Share this page
More Asia-Pacific stories
Taiwan in live-fire missile tests
Taiwan's military holds live-fire exercises, as Chinese President Hu Jintao travels to the US for a state visit.
Australia floods menace Victoria
Japan graduate jobs hit new low
Top Stories
Haiti charges 'Baby Doc' Duvalier
Strong earthquake hits Pakistan
Apple makes record $6bn profits
Arabs push settlement resolution
Tunisia leaders quit ruling party
Features & Analysis
'Ask not what your country...'
The secrets behind JFK's speech success
Flying the flag
Is the British monarchy just for show?
Grammaticas in China
Powerplays and mistrust as US-China ties shift
Jobs alert
Can a company like Apple be a one-man band?
Most Popular
Haiti charges 'Baby Doc' Duvalier
Apple makes record $6bn profits
Murdered Jo 'did not eat pizza'
India aims for tidal power first
Strong earthquake hits Pakistan
Arabs push settlement resolution
Obama hosts China's Hu at dinner
Colombia police nab narco-pigeon
Pregnant police mutts in doghouse
The anti-shuffle brigade
Elsewhere on BBC News
Silicon Valley insider
Tech expert Michael S Malone on the traits of successful start-ups and what makes the Valley tick
How a new "digital ink" e-reader is bringing colour to the tablet market
News feeds
E-mail news
About BBC News
Editors' blog
BBC College of Journalism
News sources
World Service Trust
About the BBC
BBC Help
Contact Us
Accessibility Help
Terms of Use
Privacy & Cookies
Advertise With Us
BBC © MMXI The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.
HomeUS & CanadaLatin AmericaUKAfricaAsia-PacEuropeMid-EastSouth AsiaBusinessHealthSci/EnvironmentTechEntertainmentVideo