Unification Through Pandas II: Panda-American Summit
(AP): U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick hears bamboo trade concerns from Qing Zai, an adult giant panda, during a trip to a conservation center in Chengdu, Sichuan, China, on Wednesday, Jan. 25.
The trip highlighted a sentimental U.S.-Chinese tie amid strains over trade, human rights and other issues.
"For more than 30 years, pandas have been a very practical symbol of the conservation relationship between the United States and China," Zoellick told reporters later, standing beside an outdoor pen as two adult pandas wrestled inside.
Zoellick cuddles a 5-month-old panda cub during a trip to a research center in Chengdu, in southwest China's Sichuan province Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2006.
A lone giant panda sits while eating in Chengdu, China. The center in Chengdu – the capital of province of Sichuan, which is the panda's natural habitat – is part of efforts to breed the rare, endangered animals in captivity. The government says a record 21 surviving panda cubs were born in captivity last year.
Beijing also has offered a panda pair to rival Taiwan in an effort to boost sentiment on the self-ruled island in favor of uniting with the communist mainland. Taiwan's government hasn't said whether it will accept the gift.
Previous attempts of pandas to broker lasting peace between China and Taiwan have been previously reported.
January 27, 2006 | Permalink
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I don't think I would have gotten that close to a panda...they are still bears!:O
Posted by: Audiene at Feb 10, 2006 4:47:44 PM
I'd love to share a meal with a panda bear. No need for formalities, like chewing with your mouth closed or using a plate and cutlery.
Posted by: Chief-Ten-Bears at Apr 19, 2006 8:47:48 AM
I'd love too!!
Posted by: Leona at Apr 2, 2007 2:17:17 PM