Chinese Leader Visits Britain on European Tour

Posted June 26th, 2011 at 9:30 am (UTC-5)
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Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao is spending Sunday in Britain as he continues a European tour.

Mr. Wen visited a Chinese-owned car manufacturing plant in Birmingham where he was met by a small group of protesters demanding freedom for Chinese-ruled Tibet. He also attended a brief performance at the Shakespeare Center in Stratford-upon-Avon.

The Chinese leader arrived in Britain Saturday from Hungary. He travels on to Germany Monday after meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron.

China is demonstrating a growing interest in Europe. Reports say that after Mr. Wen’s talks with Mr. Cameron, major investment deals will be announced.

But China’s human rights record remains an important issue for European leaders. The Chinese government has faced fierce criticism for cracking down on dissidents and investing in African countries with authoritarian governments.

German officials say the issue will be discussed when Mr. Wen attends a cabinet meeting later in the week.

This is Mr. Wen’s second European tour in just nine months.