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Competition shouldn’t result in battle, Joe Biden tells Xi Jinping

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Their telephone name was solely the second between the 2 leaders, and the primary time they’ve spoken since February.

U.S. President Joe Biden instructed his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on September 10 that each nations wanted “to ensure competition does not veer into conflict” as they grapple with a rising checklist of variations.

The telephone name was solely the second between the 2 leaders, and the primary time they’ve spoken since February, not lengthy after Mr. Biden’s inauguration. The months since have seen each side conflict on various points, beginning with a war-of-words that performed out in public when senior officers from the 2 nations met in Alaska in March in what was the primary important engagement with Beijing by the brand new administration. The variations vary from human rights points in Hong Kong and Xinjiang and the Taiwan query to the COVID-19 origins investigation and now the disaster in Afghanistan.

The rancorous U.S-China relationship underneath former President Donald Trump has broadly carried over into the brand new administration, which has mentioned it could compete with China when it wanted to, but additionally needed to cooperate on some points comparable to local weather change. China, in distinction, has mentioned that cooperation couldn’t happen on points whereas the broader relationship remained confrontational, described this month by Foreign Minister Wang Yi as a state of affairs the place “if an oasis is surrounded by deserts, then sooner or later the oasis will be desertified.”

In the September 10 name (September 9 night time Washington time), each side “had a broad, strategic discussion in which they discussed areas where our interests converge, and areas where our interests, values, and perspectives diverge”, the White House mentioned in a quick assertion. “They agreed to engage on both sets of issues openly and straightforwardly. This discussion, as President Biden made clear, was part of the United States’ ongoing effort to responsibly manage the competition between the United States and the PRC. President Biden underscored the United States’ enduring interest in peace, stability, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific and the world and the two leaders discussed the responsibility of both nations to ensure competition does not veer into conflict,” the assertion mentioned.

A extra detailed readout from the Chinese Foreign Ministry mentioned Mr. Xi had “pointed out that for some time, due to the U.S. policy on China, the China-U.S. relationship has run into serious difficulty”. The Chinese chief mentioned, “When China and the United States cooperate, the two countries and the world will benefit; when China and the United States are in confrontation, the two countries and the world will suffer.” He added: “Getting the relationship right is not an option, but something we must do and must do well.”

He mentioned engagement on local weather change, COVID-19 response and financial restoration may proceed “on the basis of respecting each other’s core concerns and properly managing differences”.

Amid the variations, the prospect of cooperation does, nonetheless, seem dim for now on points together with local weather change and Afghanistan. Mr. Wang, the Foreign Minister, in an August 29 telephone name with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, slammed “the hasty withdrawal” of U.S. forces and instructed Mr. Blinken that the U.S. “on the premise of respecting Afghanistan’s sovereignty and independence, should take concrete actions to help Afghanistan combat terrorism and violence, rather than practicing double standards or selectively fighting terrorism.” He mentioned whereas each side had “recently conducted communication on such issues as the situation in Afghanistan and climate change”, the Chinese aspect “will consider how to engage with the United States based on its attitude towards China.” “If the U.S. side also hopes to bring bilateral relations back on the right track, it should stop blindly smearing and attacking China, and stop undermining China’s sovereignty, security and development interests,” Mr. Wang mentioned.

In late July, Chinese officers offered visiting U.S. officers with “two lists” of calls for in talks in Tianjin, named a “List of U.S. Wrongdoings that Must Stop” and a “List of Key Individual Cases that China Has Concerns With.” Among Beijing’s calls for have been to unconditionally revoke visa restrictions on Communist Party members, for the U.S. “to stop suppressing Chinese enterprises”, and to withdraw an extradition request for Meng Wanzhou, the chief monetary officer of tech agency Huawei who was arrested in Canada and is on trial. Mr. Wang additionally instructed Mr. Blinken the U.S. was “politicising origins tracing” of COVID-19, which he described as “a political burden left by the former U.S. government.” “The sooner the U.S. side unloads this burden, the easier it will be to get out of the current predicament,” he mentioned.

A U.S. effort to interact China on local weather change earlier this month didn’t seem to make a lot headway, after Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry travelled to Tianjin for talks with Chinese officers. Mr. Wang instructed him the prospect of cooperation hinged on how the U.S. dealt with different points and that “the ball now is in the U.S. court”. He mentioned, “The U.S. side wants the climate change cooperation to be an ‘oasis’ of China-U.S. relations. However, if the oasis is all surrounded by deserts, then sooner or later, the oasis will be desertified.”

(With inputs from Sriram Lakshman)

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