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Asian and EU leaders discuss forging greater ties

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Asian and EU leaders discuss forging greater ties


Almost 40 Asian and European leaders have opened a summit in Helsinki in Finland. Reporters at the venue say differences over human rights concerns have already complicated relations between various countries. While many of the leaders are keen to focus on how they can boost trade with booming Asian economies, other officials are keen to highlight examples of alleged human rights abuses.

That has annoyed many of the Asian countries being targeted for criticism, with calls that only trade should be discussed. But hundreds of protesters outside the summit are also urging the leaders not to ignore a string of controversial issues. Human rights campaigners and anti-globalisation activists were among those who gathered. Police reportedly detained more than 100 people on Saturday.

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