Americans in China get tour fit for a Qing

Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang spent two hours Wednesday visiting with a delegation of American high-school students from Sidwell Friends, a private school in Washington, D.C.

Diplomats here say the visit was unprecedented, even for top-level official guests.

After an elaborate tea party and exchange of gifts, the premier personally conducted the students on an extensive 11/4-hour walking tour of the historic sites in the exclusive Zhongnanhai compound, where China's leaders live and work.

The walled-in compound area contains numerous gardens, palaces, and pavilions bordering on several large lakes, all of which were constructed during the Ming and Qing dynasties.

The students were shown Mao Tse-tung's former offices and other rare sites that have not been open to the public in many years, if at all.

The premier was in a particularly exuberant mood, his aides said.

In his formal welcoming remarks, he urged the students to get to know China well during their three-week visit.

Premier Zhao visited the Sidwell Friends School during his trip to Washington in January, where a class of some 20 students had been studying Chinese for several months. At that time, he invited the students to visit China as his personal guests.

We want to hear, did we miss an angle we should have covered? Should we come back to this topic? Or just give us a rating for this story. We want to hear from you.

Loading...

Loading...