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Angry Chinese dub Obama an 'idler' and a 'rapper' after he chews gum throughout summit in Beijing

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U.S. President Barack Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during their meeting in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. 
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during their meeting in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a drink after a toast at a lunch banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. Obama is on a state visit after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.  REUTERS/Greg Baker/Pool

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a drink after a toast at a lunch banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. Obama is on a state visit after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. REUTERS/Greg Baker/Pool

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) Zhang Dejiang during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. REUTERS/Petar Kujundzic

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) Zhang Dejiang during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. REUTERS/Petar Kujundzic

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a meeting with China's Premier Li Keqiang (not pictured) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. REUTERS/Petar Kujundzic

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during a meeting with China's Premier Li Keqiang (not pictured) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. REUTERS/Petar Kujundzic

REUTERS

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U.S. President Barack Obama

He may be famed for his public appeal but it appears that Barack Obama has incurred the wrath of a whole nation in the most unlikely way possible...

The Potus was spotted chewing gum at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in Beijing.

Several times during the conference, Obama was caught on camera chomping away, including at his his arrival on Monday.

Riled people in China took to Sina Weibo, the country’s equivalent of Twitter, to criticise the president.

Yin Hong, a professor of journalism at Beijing's Tsinghua University, posted on the social media site, "We made this meeting so luxurious, with singing and dancing, but see Obama, stepping out of his car chewing gum like an idler."  Another user labelled Obama a “rapper”.

Chewing gum is seen as something of a social faux pas in some south east Asian countries. In fact, there is ban on importing gum in Singapore, while in Japan it is frowned upon when doing business.

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U.S. President Barack Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama

Obama’s mastication was seen as disrespectful behaviour at such an important meeting. 

The Potus is known to be a former smoker and frequently uses Nicorette gum to help stop his cravings, which may explain why he was champing away.

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U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a drink after a toast at a lunch banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. Obama is on a state visit after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.  REUTERS/Greg Baker/Pool

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a drink after a toast at a lunch banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. Obama is on a state visit after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. REUTERS/Greg Baker/Pool

REUTERS

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have a drink after a toast at a lunch banquet in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing November 12, 2014. Obama is on a state visit after attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. REUTERS/Greg Baker/Pool

Despite the social media storm in a teacup, it seems that Obama hasn’t done too badly at the summit.

The conference closed with a “historic” climate change deal between China and America.

Perhaps it’s time for a celebratory piece of chewing gum.

(Independent.co.uk)

Online Editors