230619095246 02 blinken xi 061923

China and US Seek to Stabilize Relationship, Avoid Conflict in Beijing Talks

230619095246 02 blinken xi 061923

In a rare visit to Beijing by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, China and the United States reached an agreement on Monday to work towards stabilizing their intense rivalry in order to prevent the situation from escalating into a conflict according to Reuters. However, no major breakthroughs were announced during the discussions.

China

Chinese President Xi Jinping expressed satisfaction with the “progress” made after meeting with Blinken at the prestigious Great Hall of the People, a venue typically reserved for welcoming heads of state. Blinken, the first U.S. Secretary of State to meet with the Chinese leader since 2018, informed reporters that he had addressed contentious issues, including Taiwan, the democratic island claimed by Beijing.

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US

While the establishment of regular military-to-military communications, a matter of global concern, did not see advancement, Blinken anticipated that senior U.S. officials would visit China in the coming weeks. The hope was that this meeting, lasting approximately 30 minutes, would facilitate a summit between Xi and U.S. President Joe Biden later in the year.

China and US Relationship

Biden and Xi’s last meeting occurred during the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia, in November, where they pledged to improve communication. However, tensions have since escalated due to disputes over Taiwan, allegations of espionage, and other concerns.

At the meeting, President Xi, seated across a table adorned with pink lotus flowers, acknowledged that “progress” had been made and specific agreements reached. He described this development as positive. Blinken responded by emphasizing that both countries have an “obligation and responsibility” to manage their relationship and that the United States is committed to fulfilling this responsibility.

Blinken’s discussions in Beijing, which included talks with China’s top diplomat Wang Yi and foreign minister Qin Gang, were described as “candid and constructive.” However, the nature of the progress mentioned by President Xi was not immediately clear. According to the Chinese readout of the talks, Xi expressed his hope for a stable and sound China-U.S. relationship and expressed belief that the two countries can overcome various challenges.

Furthermore, Xi urged the United States not to undermine China’s legitimate rights and interests, signaling potential flashpoints such as Taiwan.