President Obama did his best to make Chinese President Xi Jinping feel at home on Friday – by making protesters disappear.
A Rose Garden news conference with the two world leaders featured giant screens, which blocked out any view of pro- and anti-Xi protesters just outside the White House gates.
Marion Smith, executive director of Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, shared pictures of the Obama administration’s screens on Twitter.
“The @WhiteHouse puts up screens to block #Xi’s view of protesters during visit. Bad move. Insult to American values,” Smith wrote on Twitter. “Police pushing back human-rights protesters at @WhiteHouse to separate them from pro-Xi protestors. #ChinaRightsNow.”
His pictures spread on social media and were soon picked up by Drudge Report.
Xi was greeted by Obama with a military honor guard and 21-gun salute before the two sat down to for their formal summit. “March of Volunteers,” the anthem of the People’s Republic of China since the 1949 revolution, was also played, the New York Times reported.
“Protesters were kept at a distance, a block from the White House, and their chants could only be heard faintly from the South Lawn,” the Times reported Friday.
The anti-Xi protesters focused their chants on China’s abysmal human rights record, its occupation of Tibet, and the treatment of minority groups.