For those who have never visited China’s Forbidden City, they can see it now – through the tweets of US President Donald Trump, who is using a picture taken at the UNESCO World Heritage Site as the cover of his Twitter account.
Trump, who is having a “state visit-plus” in China, sent a slew of tweets on Wednesday, calling his first couple of hours in Beijing “unforgettable” and the lavish welcome he received “beautiful”.
“On behalf of @FLOTUS Melania and I, THANK YOU for an unforgettable afternoon and evening at the Forbidden City in Beijing, President Xi and Madame Peng Liyuan. We are looking forward to rejoining you tomorrow morning!” Trump wrote.
The US president flew to Beijing from Seoul on Wednesday afternoon.
On the morning before delivering a speech at the National Assembly in South Korea, Trump tweeted that he would “be headed to China where I very much look forward to meeting with President Xi who is just off his great political victory”, referring to Xi’s re-election as the Party general secretary at the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China late last month.
Upon arriving at the Chinese capital, the Trumps had afternoon tea with President Xi and his wife Peng Liyuan at the Hall of Embodied Treasures in the Forbidden City, before a tour of the ancient imperial palace, including a performance by young Peking Opera students.
Their picture with the performers dressed in ornate traditional Chinese costumes is apparently one of Trump’s favorites during the afternoon tour. He used it as the cover of his Twitter account. He also posted or retweeted four other pictures of his tour in the Forbidden City.
Trump wrote in another post that he was “looking forward to a full day of meetings with President Xi and our delegations tomorrow. THANK YOU for the beautiful welcome China! @FLOTUS Melania and I will never forget it!”
David Shambaugh, professor of political science at the George Washington University, said he is a great admirer of the collections at the Forbidden City, also known as the Palace Museum.
“It is a very important heritage for Chinese civilization, and (it’s) very important for President Trump on his first visit to Beijing be shown this 5,000 years of history,” Shambaugh told China Daily. “That I’m sure will leave a big impact on him and his wife.”