WASHINGTON (CN) – President Obama challenged China’s Internet censorship on Monday during a town-hall style address to students in Shanghai. He also said he doesn’t use Twitter. “I should be honest, as president of the United States, there are times where I wish information didn’t flow so freely because then I wouldn’t have to listen to people criticizing me all the time,” Obama said in response to the question, “Should we be able to use Twitter freely?”
“I have a lot of critics in the United States who can say all kinds of things about me,” Obama said. “I actually think that that makes our democracy stronger and it makes me a better leader because it forces me to hear opinions that I don’t want to hear.”
China’s “Great Firewall” blocks the country’s estimated 250 million Internet users from social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
During his speech, Obama also pushed China on climate change and extended a hand as a global power.
Obama is in Beijing, where he will meet with Chinese President Hu Jintao and visit the Great Wall and the Forbidden City.