US, China trade Taiwan warnings – Community News
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US, China trade Taiwan warnings

PHONE CALL:
Ahead of today’s meeting between the presidents of the two nations, Antony Blinken urged Beijing to resolve the issues in line with Taiwanese’s wishes.

Top diplomats from China and the US have exchanged stern warnings on the issue of Taiwan’s focal point ahead of today’s much-anticipated summit between their leaders.

The virtual meeting of US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) is taking place against a backdrop of mounting tensions – partly over Taiwan.

In a phone call on Friday with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (王毅) to discuss preparations for the summit, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed concern about Beijing’s “military, diplomatic and economic pressure”. on Taiwan.

Photo: Reuters

The US State Department said in a statement that Blinken’s conversation with Wang “emphasized the US’s long-standing interest in peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait”.

Blinken “expressed concern about the continued military, diplomatic and economic pressure of the People’s Republic of China against Taiwan”, and “urged Beijing to engage in meaningful dialogue to peacefully resolve the problems in the China Strait on in a manner consistent with the wishes and best interests of the people of Taiwan,” the statement read.

Wang warned of the dangers of US actions that could support “Taiwan independence.”

“Any complicity with and support for Taiwan’s independence forces undermines peace in the Taiwan Strait and would ultimately be just a boomerang,” Wang told Blinken, according to a readout of China’s call released yesterday.

China has ramped up military activity near Taiwan in recent years, with a record number of planes entering the country’s air defense identification area early last month.

Washington has repeatedly expressed its support for Taiwan in the face of what it has described as Chinese aggression.

Biden has largely kept Beijing from its predecessor, former US President Donald Trump, with both governments seeing an emerging China as the greatest challenge of the 21st century.

While the world’s two biggest greenhouse gas emitters last week announced a surprising agreement to work together on climate change, Washington and Beijing have indicated they would not sacrifice ground for flashpoint problems.

US officials have framed today’s summit as an opportunity to “responsibly manage the competition” while trying to work together in areas where the two align.

Xi last week warned of the return of Cold War tensions in the Asia-Pacific region.

Biden and Xi have spoken by phone twice since the veteran Democrat moved into the White House. The pair also met extensively when Biden was the vice president of former US President Barack Obama and Xi the vice president of former Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤).

Biden had hoped to meet Xi at a recent G20 summit in Rome, but the Chinese leader has not traveled since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and instead agreed to hold virtual talks by the end of the year. feed.

Additional reporting by CNA

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