RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. (AP) — With a stroll under the California desert sun, President Barack Obama and Chinese leader Xi Jinping opened a second day of talks at a “get to know you” summit featuring a high-stakes agenda.
Obama described the talks as “terrific” as he and Xi walked side by side yesterday through the manicured gardens of the sprawling Sunnylands estate. In the spirit of the informal atmosphere at the meetings, the men went without jackets and ties.
The presidents rejoined advisers for a session expected to focus on economic issues, along with additional discussions on North Korea and cybersecurity.
Neither leader was expected to make a closing statement before the gathering wrapped up in the early afternoon. U.S. and Chinese officials planned to address reporters after the summit.
At a news conference Friday night, Obama said the United States and China were in “uncharted waters” regarding computer security. The presidents carefully avoided accusing each other’s nation of high-tech intrusions, but acknowledged an urgent need to find a common approach on addressing the matter.
“We don’t have the kind of protocols that have governed military issues and arms issues, where nations have a lot of experience in trying to negotiate what’s acceptable and what’s not,” Obama said.
Obama also sought to distinguish between China’s alleged cyberspying and his own government’s monitoring of U.S. phone and Internet records. He insisted the two issues were separate and distinct, and that concerns over hacking and intellectual property theft shouldn’t be confused with the debate over how governments collect data to combat terrorist threats.
“That’s a conversation that I welcome,” he said.