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June 18th, 2010

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04:10 am - Chinese President to visit Ottawa in June.

Chinese President Hu Jintao is going to Ottawa in June ahead of the G20 summit in Toronto...WHY IS HE GOING AFTER I LEFT OTTAWA?!?! TAT  This is like...one of the people in this world I most want to meet along with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao...and I'm going to miss this chance to see him...AGAIN.  He visited Ottawa when I was in first year university (I remember seeing all the Canadian and Chinese flags on the lampposts around the city and wondering why that was, then later I found out it was because Hu had visited) but back then I wasn't so into Chinese politics yet.  I can't believe it, Hu, in Canada, in MY city (or...kind of my city...the last city I lived in in Canada before I left anyway).  Grrr...if only Harper hadn't neglected Canadian-China relations for so long maybe Hu would've visited while I was still in university and then I could have gone to see him!  

Hmm...I wonder what Ottawa's going to be like while Hu's there.  When Obama visited Ottawa in February 2009 the city went a little security crazy, helicopters circling in the air, police on every street corner (though I guess I can understand, I mean heaven forbid the US's little darling get hurt while on Canadian soil, and this was right after the elections meaning Obama's fans were still on their election high).  

The Chinese Students Associations of universities and colleges in the Ottawa area are organizing a welcome for him as well as to celebrate 40 years of diplomatic relations between Canada and China at Parliament Hill on June 24th and 25th.  I hope it all goes smoothly, usually wherever Chinese political leaders go there's bound to be those protesters that follow.  When Hu visited Washington awhile back, in the middle of a Q&A with reporters this FLG chick who had managed to get into the White House as a reporter started ranting and raving (apparently she did the same to Jiang Zemin, China's previous president when he was on a trip to the US too).  I think you can find the video clip of it on youtube, I remember Bush standing next to Hu and whispering to him something like 'it's ok, you're ok' as security tried to get the woman to leave.  

I think nowadays though more and more Chinese people (students, immigrants, particularly international students who have lived for most of their lives in China and are now studying abroad) are paying attention to these things and so now at these high-profile events whenever the protesters pop up they get faced with a barricade of China supporters too, like when Premier Wen visited England last January.  I believe after what happened in 2008 with all the chaos over the Olympics people are finally understanding that ignoring those people don't solve problems, you gotta fight fire with fire in these situations, and so while they have their right to express their opinions, the best way to rebuff them should you disagree is to tell your side of the story, not ignoring it and keeping quiet.  Otherwise they just think you agree with them and they get even more motivated.  

Granted which side the media chooses to relay is still a whole different story.  For all the supporters that were there when Premier Wen visited England, most of the media's attention were focused on the protesters.  I only managed to find out there actually WERE supporters there by word of mouth (or in this case, messages on Facebook) from people that were actually there and took photos with their own cameras as proof.

Let's hope President Hu's visit is a success and that the G20 summit will yield some actual productive results.

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