Merkel tells China's President Xi free expression is vital

BERLIN Fri Mar 28, 2014 12:36pm EDT

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and China's President Xi Jinping shakes hands following a joint news conference after an agreement signing, at the Chancellery in Berlin March 28, 2014. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and China's President Xi Jinping shakes hands following a joint news conference after an agreement signing, at the Chancellery in Berlin March 28, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch

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BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday that she told visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping it was crucial to ensure freedom of expression in both China and Germany.

"Broad and free expression of opinion is of course a very important element to promote the creativity of a society, be it in research, culture or civil society," German Chancellor Angela Merkel told a joint news conference in Berlin.

(Reporting by Stephen Brown and Erik Kirschbaum, Writing by Michelle Martin; Editing by Gareth Jones)

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