Australia, Chinese Leaders Hold Talks in Beijing

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd met with his Chinese counterpart in Beijing Thursday for talks that were overshadowed by the continuing controversy over Tibet.

Mr. Rudd was greeted by Premier Wen Jiabao during an elaborate red carpet ceremony at the Great Hall of the People.

The Australian leader says he raised the issue of Beijing's harsh crackdown of anti-government protesters in Tibet during his discussions with Mr. Wen, which he described as "good and solid."

The two leaders have also agreed to create a new ministerial-level partnership to address climate change, and will restart negotiations on a free trade deal between their two nations.

Mr. Rudd promised to have a "straightforward discussion" about Tibet with Mr. Wen during a speech Wednesday at Beijing University, which he delivered in fluent Mandarin.

But Chinese state-run news outlets have virtually ignored his comments on Tibet.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and ABC.