Ex-Kuom­intang chief tours his­toric street

China Daily (Canada) - - CHINA - By XU WEI

xuwei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Kuom­intang Hon­orary Chair­man Lien Chan vis­ited Bei­jing’s Nan­lu­ogux­i­ang hu­tong on Thurs­day, two days af­ter Com­mu­nist Party of China chief Xi Jin­ping made a sur­prise visit to the area amid heavy smog.

Lien, who met Xi in Bei­jing on Feb 18, ar­rived at the pop­u­lar tourist spot in the cap­i­tal’s down­town Dongcheng district — fa­mous for its bou­tiques, restaurants and bars — at around 10 am Thurs­day with his wife, Lien Fangyu, and toured the 800-me­ter­long al­ley for about an hour, store own­ers and oth­ers said.

Un­like Xi’s visit two days ago, Lien’s tour took place af­ter a cold front and light overnight rain cleared the cap­i­tal’s skies. Smog had lin­gered in the coun­try’s cen­tral and north re­gions since Feb 20.

Lien’s visit came as the main­land and Tai­wan signed two agree­ments in Taipei on Thurs­day promis­ing to en­hance me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal and earthquake-mon­i­tor­ing co­op­er­a­tion.

The agree­ments were signed by Chen Dem­ing, pres­i­dent of the main­land-based As­so­ci­a­tion for Re­la­tions Across the Tai­wan Straits, and Lin Join­sane, chair­man of the Tai­wan­based Straits Ex­change Foun­da­tion.

Lien and his wife made at least two stops in Nan­lu­ogux­i­ang, in­clud­ing a ho­tel lo­cated in a court­yard.

A ho­tel em­ployee, sur­named Zhao, con­firmed that the cou­ple toured the ho­tel at around 10 am, but didn’t pro­vide other de­tails.

An­other stop Lien made was at the Chuangyi­wux­ian store, which sells poly­mer clay hand­i­crafts, in­clud­ing fig­ures of rab­bit gods.

Zhao Chunx­i­ang, the store’s man­ager, said she was made aware of the visit of “an im­por­tant per­son” by an of­fi­cial in the district that morn­ing, yet her busi­ness was not in­ter­rupted when Lien came.

“When he stepped in, I stepped up and said, ‘I know you’. He was sur­prised and said ‘re­ally’?” Zhao said.

Zhao said Lien and his wife ex­am­ined the hand­i­crafts in the store with in­ter­est.

“They were wear­ing gloves when they stepped in­side. But when they ex­am­ined

ZHANG CHUAN­DONG / FOR CHINA DAILY

Hon­orary Kuom­intang Chair­man Lien Chan (cen­ter) vis­its Bei­jing’s Nan­lu­ogux­i­ang hu­tong on Thurs­day.

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