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Chinese president attends private dinner hosted by Obama

WASHINGTON, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- Visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao attended a private dinner hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House Tuesday night.

In a friendly atmosphere both heads of state exchanged views on Sino-U.S. relations and international and regional issues of common concern.

President Obama extended a warm welcome to President Hu, who is on a state visit to the United States. Both leaders positively assessed the progress in bilateral relations, and hoped that the visit will further promote a positive, cooperative and comprehensive Sino-U.S. relationship.

Hu said he had come to the United States to strengthen mutual understanding and trust between the two peoples, boost bilateral exchanges and cooperation and enhance effective coordination between the two countries on major international and regional issues. Above all, he said he had come to open a new phase in the development of Sino-U.S. relations.

Hu, who arrived here Tuesday for a four-day state visit, will have a formal meeting with Obama on Wednesday.

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