It was without a doubt the most peaceful and well-behaved protest I have been to in years… and that is not a sentence I expected to utter at the G20.
5000 protestors on the street… 40,000 police around the city – the police were taking no chances with the world’s eyes on Seoul. Even the heavens opening and drenching those protesting the G20 meeting didn’t dampen the mood – they cheered with every clap of thunder.
Their main slogan was “Put People First”. Chants of “people not money” and calls for leaders to come up with real solutions to the economic crisis rather than expecting the man on the street to shoulder the burden. And to round off events – a funeral pyre was burnt in the middle of the street… symbolic of what these anti-globalization protestors believe big corporations do to the workers.
Delivered before bilateral meeting at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Seoul, Republic of Korea
PRESIDENT OBAMA: It is a great pleasure to have a chance to meet with Chancellor Merkel. Not only do I have great personal admiration for her, but obviously the strong alliance between our two countries is one of the cornerstones of prosperity and peace not just in the transatlantic relationship but in the world.
Delivered at the Blue House in Seoul, Republic of Korea
PRESIDENT LEE: (As translated.) Thank you, members of the press. On behalf of the government and people of the Republic of Korea, I wish to welcome President Obama and his delegation on their second visit to Korea.
Delivered before their bilateral meeting at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Seoul, Republic of Korea PRESIDENT OBAMA: Just to address the press very quickly. It’s wonderful to see Program Hu once again. We were just noting that it’s the seventh time we’ve had an opportunity to meet. And the U.S.-China relationship I think has become stronger over the last several years.