BEIJING, May 24 (Xinhua) -- Chinese president Hu Jintao said Monday China and the United States should respect each other's core interests and major concerns at the ongoing bilateral talks in Beijing.
He said sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity were a country's most basic rights recognized by the norms governing international relations.
"To the Chinese people, nothing is more important than safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity," Hu said in a speech to the opening session of the second round of China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue.
"I trust it is not difficult for the American people, who went through the American Civil War in their history, to understand how important and valuable unity was to a nation," he said.
The two-day dialogue was a mechanism designed to enhance mutual understanding and trust between China and the United States. The first round of the China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue was held in Washington in July last year.