Obama Meets with Chinese Premier Before Departing China

U.S. President Barack Obama is meeting with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao Wednesday for a final discussion before leaving China for South Korea.

The president and Mr. Wen are holding a bilateral meeting and attending a working lunch together.

Mr. Obama will then tour part of the Great Wall of China before flying to Seoul, the final nation in his eight-day Asian tour.

In South Korea, he is expected to discuss with President Lee Myung-bak a U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement under consideration by South Korean lawmakers. The U.S. Congress also has yet to ratify the agreement.

Negotiations to get North Korea to give up its nuclear program are also high on the agenda. Mr. Obama has said his administration will grant North Korea’s request for one-on-one talks, but only as part of the effort to bring Pyongyang back to the six-party talks, involving both Koreas, the U.S., China, Russia, and Japan.

Tuesday in Beijing, Mr. Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao pledged to work together on climate change, nuclear disarmament and other global issues.

Mr. Obama addressed the touchy subject of Chinese human rights, and he pressed Beijing to let its currency rise in value.

He also urged China to hold talks with representatives of exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama as soon as possible.

Mr. Hu said that given the countries’ differences in “national conditions,” it is normal they may disagree on some issues. But he said it is important to respect and accommodate each other’s core interests and major concerns.