Oct 14 - U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korea's Lee Myung-bak present a united front on trade and North Korean nuclear disarmament. Lily Grimes reports.
Pomp and ceremony as U.S. President Barack Obama welcomes South Korea's Lee Myung-bak to Washington. The state visit is a high point in the long-time alliance between Washington and Seoul, and Obama had warm words for Lee. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "Mr. President your life story from crushing poverty to the Presidency is an inspiration. Your success, Korea's success speaks to the truth that with education and hard work anything is possible. It's a spirit our countries share. You've described it in Korean and in English it translates as yes we can." The U.S. Congress ratified a bilateral trade deal just hours after Lee arrived on Wednesday. But critics say the pacts will hurt U.S. employment because of increased competition from South Korean imports. Lee joked that some of those in attendance voted against the deal but that they'd soon see the positive results. Lee also stressed the pair's agreement that North Korea must get rid of its nuclear weapons. Lily Grimes, Reuters