Biden meets human rights advocates on China

Reuters News
Posted: Feb 09, 2012 11:53 AM
Biden meets human rights advocates on China

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Vice President Joe Biden and a group of human rights advocates discussed the "deterioration" of the rights situation in China, the White House said on Thursday, signaling the issue is likely to figure in his talks with China's vice president next week.

Biden, who will help host Vice President Xi Jinping -- China's president-in-waiting -- in Washington, met four rights activists and experts on Wednesday.

"They discussed the deterioration of China's human rights situation, prospects for reform, and recommendations for U.S. policy," the White House said. "He reiterated his view that greater openness and protection of universal rights is the best way to promote innovation, prosperity, and stability in all countries, including China."

Beijing has traditionally bristled at such U.S. criticism as interference in its affairs, even though the Obama administration has taken a relatively low-key approach so far.

(Reporting By Matt Spetalnick)