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International relations

Xi's Olympics diplomacy stumbles as leaders avoid Beijing Games

Saudi Arabia and India's delegations cancel at last minute

Chinese President Xi Jinping attends the opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics on Feb. 4.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's diplomatic push timed with the Beijing Winter Olympics hit a snag after Saudi Arabia's crown prince and India's top envoy canceled plans to attend the opening ceremony at the last minute.

China's Foreign Ministry had announced that 25 heads of state and other leaders would attend the opening ceremony. Twenty-four leaders ultimately showed up, and Xi has met with 18.

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