President Xi Jinping shakes hands with Gavin Newsom, governor of California, after arriving at San Francisco International Airport in the United States on Tuesday. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen (left) was among those who welcomed Xi at the airport. (XIE HUANCHI/XINHUA)
President Xi Jinping arrived in San Francisco on Tuesday for a summit with United States President Joe Biden and for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Economic Leaders' Meeting.
When Xi arrived at San Francisco International Airport, he was warmly welcomed by US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, California Governor Gavin Newsom and other US representatives.
As the Chinese president's motorcade left the airport for the hotel, many overseas Chinese and Chinese students were waiting along the streets, waving national flags of both China and the US to welcome his arrival. San Francisco was also the first stop during Xi's first visit to the US in 1985, when he was Party secretary of Zhengding county, Hebei province.
"I'm from New York with my daughter today, and we both really wanted to meet President Xi. We are both very excited," a woman surnamed Zhen, who traveled from the New York City borough of Brooklyn, told China Daily.
"Although we live in the United States, we are Chinese, and so is my child. I still hope that she can gain an understanding and experience of Chinese culture, learn about Chinese tradition, and thus be better able to participate in it," she added.
Zhen said she was looking forward to the meeting between the presidents and hoped their discussions would positively affect the future of US-China relations.
"For us, I hope that China and the United States can coexist harmoniously, which would also provide a safe atmosphere for the local Chinese community. Previously, we have experienced many instances of anti-Asian hate crimes, and we hope that everyone, both in China and the US, as well as all communities, can live together in harmony."
People hold signs and the national flags of China and the United States to welcome President Xi Jinping to San Francisco on Tuesday. (QIAN WEIZHONG/FOR CHINA DAILY)
Helen Ji-Li, 44, of San Francisco, said, "I'm here to show the message of peace, love and unity." She was holding a banner that said, "Let's work together for a bright future of prosperity for all in the Asia-Pacific."
The US and China can agree to disagree, but with communication intact, Ji-Li said. "People usually don't trust what they don't understand. I hope they can have deeper conversations and more understanding of each other. Seek the good, and our children's future depends on that. It's important for all Asia-Pacific countries to unite as a team."
Zheng Chaofei, who traveled from Philadelphia, said: "This is a very positive signal, as President Xi is here in the United States by invitation. I believe the US is looking for a point of easing tensions, especially now as the global economy is declining. This meeting presents an opportunity for the two major countries to join hands in boosting the global economy.
"I hope President Xi and Biden will have a good conversation and a positive outlook," Zheng added.
While pointing to people proudly singing Chinese songs and waving China's national flag, Sky Pittman, 26, said she came to welcome Xi and check out the environment.
"I feel optimistic about US-China relations," she added. "It's better to get things across in person. I don't think they (points of disagreement) are something that cannot be resolved in the end. I hope they will cover those tensions and lighten them a little bit. I really hope US-China relations can be improved and be better from this point."